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  CSPAN    Capitol Hill Hearings    News/Business.  

    September 26, 2013
    9:00 - 1:00am EDT  

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that's a good thing. so, tens of millions of americans are already better off because of the benefit and protections provided by the affordable care act. like i said, they may not know why that rebate check came in the mail. they may not notice that they are not having a co-pay for some preventive care that they received. but they are getting those benefits. that's already happening. that's already in place today. it's been going on for several years. those are the benefits of obamacare that the law the
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republicans want to repeal. although it's interesting, when you ask republicans whether they would repeal the benefits i just mentioned, when you say to them do you think it's the right thing to do to let young people stay on their parents' plans? do you want to prevent seniors from getting more discounts on their prescription drugs? no, no. we like those. those things are ok. so they don't like obamacare in theory, but some of the component parts, those that poll well, they don't mind. but that's already in place. now, here's the second thing you need to know. if you're one of over 40 million
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americans who don't have health insurance, including hundreds of thousands of folks right here in maryland, starting on tuesday, five days from now, you'll finally have the same chance to buy quality affordable health care as everybody else. and i want to i want to break this down for you. i want you to know exactly how it works. the major reason why people don't have health insurance is, not that they don't have a job or they do have a job but their employer doesn't offer health insurance, or they are self- employed. if you ever tried to buy health insurance on your own, you know it is really, really expensive. it's even worse if you have a pre-existing condition. and up to half of all americans have a pre-existing condition. see, the reason it's really expensive if you buy it on your own is because you're not part of a big group. you're not part of a group plan. and what groups do is they spread risk between sick is and healthy people. between older and younger people. and groups because insurance companies want the business of groups, that's why they are customers, they'll negotiate a
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better deal with a group than they will with an individual. so if you're on your own, you're out there trying to negotiate with insurance companies, they are looking and they are saying, well, you know, you take it or leave it, i'm going to charge you a whole lot of money, and if you got a pre-existing condition, they'll say we don't even want to insure you because we think you might get sick later on and we don't want to pay, we just want to take in premiums. so if you're not part of a group, you're either uninsurable, or you need to spend a small fortune on insurance that oftentimes is not very good. that's what's happening right now. the affordable care act was designed to solve that problem. here's how we do it. starting on tuesday, every american can visit health care.gov to find out what's called the insurance market for your state, you're in maryland, i think it's called marylandhealthconnection.gov. but if you go to healthcare.gov, they'll tell you where to go, they'll link to your state. now, this is real simple. it's a website where you can compare and purchase affordable health insurance plans side by
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side, the same way you shop for a plane ticket on kayak, same way you shop for a tv on amazon. you just go on and you start looking and hear -- here are all the options. it's buying insurance on the private market, but because now you're part of a big group plan, right, everybody in maryland is all logging in and taking a look at the prices, you've got choices. now you have new competition because insurers want your business, and that means you will have cheaper prices. so you enter in some basic information about yourself, one level of coverage -- what level of coverage you're looking for. after that you'll be presented with a list of quality, affordable plans that are
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available in your area t. will say clearly -- area. it will say clearly what each plan covers what, each plan cost, the price will be right there, it will be fully transparent. before this law only a handful of states required insurance companies to offer you instant price quotes, but because of this law ensures all 50 states will have to offer you instant price quotes, and so if you ever tried to buy insurance on your own, i promise you this is a lot easier. it's like booking a hotel or a plane ticket. and here's another thing about these new plans. if you're one ever those folks who have a pre-existing condition, these plans have to offer you coverage. they can't use your medical history to charge you more than anybody else. if you couldn't afford coverage for your child because he had asthma, he's covered.
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if you couldn't afford coverage because you were told heartburn was a pre-existing condition, you're covered. if you're one of the 45 million americans with a mental illness, you are covered. if you're a young adult or entrepreneur striking out on your own, you're covered. if you're a young couple who previously had insurance that didn't include maternity benefits, now suddenly you need some maternity benefits, you're covered. if you lose your job, and your health care with it, you're covered. so call those things that were denying you coverage in the past that were the, quote, cruelties
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of a broken health care system, on january 1, when these plans take effect, no, no, hold on -- hold on, i know what i'm talking about. you sign up starting on tuesday. the plan will take effect on january 1, and when these plans take effect, all those things change forever. now, what about choice and cost? in states where the federal government helps run these marketplaces, the average american will have more than 50 different plans to choose from with different levels of coverage. and because insurance companies are competing against one another for your business, a lot of americans will pay significantly less for their insurance than they do now. premiums are going to be different in different parts of
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the country depending how much coverage you buy, but 95% of uninsured americans will see their premiums cost less than was expected. and many families, including more than 2/3 of all young adults who buy health care through these online marketplaces, are also going to be eligible for tax credits that bring the costs down even further. so-so -- so let's be specific. right here in maryland, average 25-year-old, have we got any 25- year-olds here? so we got a few. some of you raised your hand, i'm not sure. here in maryland, average 25- year-old making $25,000 a year could end up getting covered for as little as $80 a month. $80 a month. here in maryland a family of four making $60,000 a year could get covered for as little as
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$164 a month. it's the same story across the country. in texas, average 27-year-old making $25,000 could get covered for as little as $83 a month. in florida a. family of four making $50,000 could get covered for as little as $104 a month. keen in mind the government didn't set these prices. the insurance companies, they proposed these prices because they want to get in with these big groups with all these new customers. the insurance companies are saying, these marketplaces, this law, will work. they are putting money on the line because they think it will work. competition, choice, transparency, all these things are keeping costs down. knowing you can offer your family the security of health care, that's priceless.
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now you can do it for the cost of your cable bill. probably less than your cell phone bill. \[applause/] think about that. good health insurance for the price of your cell phone bill or less. and let's say you're a young woman, you just turned -- i'm interested in this because i got two daughters, right. let's say you just turned 26, let's say you can't stay on your parents' plan anymore, if you buy health care through the marketplace, your plan has to cover free checkups, flu shots, contraceptive care. so you might end up getting more health care each month than you're paying for the premiums. all told nearly six in 10 americans without health insurance today will be able to get covered for $100 or less. it would actually be eight in 10 if every governor were working
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as hard as governor o'malley to make the affordable care act work for their citizens. unfortunately we still got a few republican governors who are so opposed to the very idea of the law, or at least they are doing it for the politics, that they haven't lifted a finger to help cover more people. some of them have actually tried to harm the law before it takes effect. but a lot of republican governors are putting politics aside and doing the right thing. yet you -- and they deserve congratulations for that. it wasn't easy for them. you got conservative governors in ohio, michigan, pennsylvania, and arizona. about eight republican governors in all, they decided to expand medicaid through the affordable care act to cover more people in their states. and millions of americans
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without insurance will get coverage through these programs. so, that's what -- that's what the affordable care act is. that's what all the fuss is about. we are giving more benefit and protections for folks who already have health insurance and we create add new market, basically a big group plan, for folks without health insurance so that they get a better deal, and then we are providing tax credits to help folks afford it. you would think that would not be so controversial. you would think people would say, ok, let's go ahead, do this so everybody has health insurance coverage. the result is more choice, more competition, real health care security, and one question people ask, how is it possible to do all this and keep costs down? well, part of what we did was build into the law all sorts of
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measures to assure that the growth of health care costs would start slowing down, and it has. under the old system doctors and hospitals, they were rewarded not for the quality of care but for the quantity of care. they get paid for the number of procedures they did instead of whether they were working or not. now he there are penalties for hospitals with high readmission rates. and last year, surprisingly enough, for the first time ever, hospital readmission rates for medicare patients actually fell. right. that means fewer taxpayer dollars go to providers who don't serve their patients well. over the past five years, we have more than doubled the adoption of electronic health records for physicians. so that means they can track what's going on better and make
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fewer mistakes. new technology start-up companies are coming up with new inventions to monitor patient health, prevent infections. there's innovation going on across the country. as a consequence, today medicare costs per enrollee are rising at the slowest rate in years. employer-based health care costs are growing at about 1/3 the rate of a decade ago. all told, since i signed the affordable care act into law, we have seen the slowest growth in health care costs on record. \[applause/] so let's think about this. if you got health insurance you are getting better protections, better benefits. if you don't have health insurance you can be part after group plan. and health care costs overall are rising much more slowly than they did before we signed the law. so far so good. what's all the fuss about? what is it that these republicans are just so mad about? look, i want to be honest.
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there are parts of the bill that some folks don't like. to help pay for the program, the wealthiest americans, families who make more than $250,000 a year, will have to pay a little bit more. extremely costly health insurance plans will no longer qualify for unlimited tax breaks. and most people who can afford health insurance now have to take responsibility to buy health insurance or pay a penalty. all right. now, the reason we do that is when uninsured people who can afford to get health insurance don't, and then they get sick or get hit by a car, and they show
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up at the emergency room, who do you think pays for that? you do. in the form of higher premiums, because the hospitals, they got to get their money back somehow. so if they are treating somebody who doesn't have health insurance, they jack up premiums for everybody who does have health insurance. it's like a hidden tax of $1,000 per family every year who has health insurance. so we are thinking that's not fair. if you can afford to get health insurance, don't dump the cost on us. the law also requires employers with more than 50 employees to either provide health insurance for your workers or pay a penalty. now, some folks say that's not fair. but if you are an employer, you can afford to provide health insurance, you don't, your employees get sick, they go to the emergency room or they end
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up on medicaid because you're not doing what you're doing, you should be doing, why is it everybody else should bear those costs? there are some folks who disagree with me on this. they say that violates people's liberties, telling them they have to get health insurance. i disagree. so did congress when it passed this bill into law. it is unfair for folks to game the system and make the rest of us pay for it. it's unfair -- \[applause/] it's unfair for responsible employers who are doing the right thing giving their employees health insurance to get undercut by some operator that's not providing health insurance for their employees. that's -- that puts the employer who is doing the right thing at a disadvantage, right? so this idea you have responsibility, everybody, that's what massachusetts did when they passed their health care plan a few years ago, and by the way today in massachusetts almost everybody's covered and the system works
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pretty well. all right. let me just wrap up by saying this. like any law, like any big product launch, there are going to be some glitches as this thing unfolds. folks in different parts of the country will have different experiences, it will be smoother in places like maryland where governors are working to implement it rather than fight it, but somewhere around the country there's going to be a computer glitch and the website's not working quite the way it's supposed to work. something happens where there's some error made somewhere. that will happen.
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that happens whenever you roll out a new program. i guarantee the opponents of the law, they'll have their cameras ready to document anything that doesn't go completely right, and they'll extend it to the news folks and say look at this, the thing's not working. but most of the stories you'll hear about how obamacare just can't work, it's just not based on facts. every time they have predicted something not working, it's worked. \[applause/] they said that these rates would come in real high and everybody's premiums would be sky-high and it turns out lo and behold actually the prices came in lower than we expected, lower than i predicted. these how well cost efficient and choice -- competition and choice works. they said this would be a disaster in terms of jobs. there's no widespread evidence that the affordable care act is hurting jobs. one of john mccain's former economic advisors admitted just
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this week, and i'm quoting here, i was expecting to see it. i was looking for it. but it's not there. it's not there. so the reason it is reforming health care it's going to help the economy over the long term. not only will it help lower costs for business, not only will it help families, it will free up entrepreneurship in this country because if you got a great idea for your own business, but you have never tried it because your spouse had a pre-existing condition, you didn't want to lose your employer-based coverage, you've got the ability now to get your own coverage. that's security. that's freedom. so we are now only five days away from finishing the job. five days. \[applause/] starting on tuesday you can sign up. but you don't have to sign up on tuesday. you've got six months to enroll in these new plans. can you go to the website, you can check it out.
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you can see if what i'm saying is true. you can sign up next week. you can sign up next month. you can sign up two months from now, three months from now, but you can sign up, tell your friends, tell your classmates, tell your family members about the new health care choices. talk to folks at your church, in your classroom. you going to a football game? basketball game? talk to them. tell them what the law means. over the next few months state and local leaders from across the country are going to hold events to help get the word out. go out there and join them. secretary of health and human services is in texas right now working with folks on the ground to make sure this all works for texas families. all across the country people are getting ready.
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all kinds of people are working hand in hand because we are all in this together, that's what america does best, that's what this country is all about. but we need you to spread the word. you don't have to take my word for it. if you talk to somebody that said, i don't know, i was fox news and they said it's horrible, and you -- and you can say, you know what, don't take my word for it. go on the website, see for yourself what the prices are, see for yourself what the choices are, then make up your own mind. just -- that's all i'm asking. make up your own mind. i promise you, if you go on the website and it turns out you're going to save 100, $200, $300 a month on your insurance or buy insurance for the first time, even if you didn't vote for me, i'll bet you'll sign up for that health care plan.
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\[applause/] so you don't need to listen to the politician. you don't need to listen to me. check it out for yourself. make up your own mind whether this works for you. and part -- look, part of the reason i need your help to make this law work is because there are so many people out there working to make it fail. one of the biggest newspapers in the country recently published an editorial i thought was pretty good. they said, the republicans in congress are poisoning obamacare then trying to claim it's sick. that's what's been happening. they have tried to put up every conceivable roadblock. they cut funding for efforts to
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educate people about what's in the law. some of them said, if their constituents call them, we won't even try to explain to them what's in the law. they actually opened up an investigation into people who tried to help churches and charities understand how to help people sign up for the law. some of the tea party's biggest donors, some of the wealthiest men in america, are funding a cynical ad campaign trying to convince young people not to buy health care at all. think about it, these are billionaires, several times over, you know they have good health care, but they are actually spending money on television trying to convince young people that if you got the choice between getting affordable health care or going without health care, you should choose not having any health care.
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do you expect if you get sick or hurt and you get stuck with a massive bill, you say, folks, they are going to help you out? or are they going to pay for your health care? it is interesting, though, how over the last couple years the republican party has just spun itself up around this issue. and the fact is the republican'' biggest fear at this point is not that the affordable care act will fail, what they are worried about is it's going to succeed. think about it. if it was as bad as they said it was going to be, then they should go ahead and let it happen and everybody would hate it so much and everybody would vote to repeal it. that would be the end of it.
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so what is it they are so scared about? me. they have made -- a big political issue out of it, trying to scare everybody with lies about death panels and killing granny, right? that's armageddon. so if it actually works, they'll look pretty bad. if it actually works that will mean that everything they were saying really wasn't true and they were just playing politics. just the other day one republican in congress said, we need to shove this thing down before the marketplace is opened and people get to see that they'll be getting coverage and getting these subsidies because and i'm going to quote him here. he said, it's going to prove almost impossible to undo obamacare, right. so in other words we've got to shut this thing down before
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people find out that they like it. \[applause/] that's a strange argument. don't you think that's a strange argument? and the closer we get, the more desperate they get. i mean over the last few weeks the rhetoric has just been cranked up to a place i have never seen before. one congressman said that obamacare is the most dangerous piece of legislation ever passed. ever. in the history of america, this is the most dangerous piece of
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legislation. creating a marketplace so people can buy group insurance plans, the most dangerous ever. you have a state representative somewhere say that it's as destructive to personal and individual liberties as the fugitive slave act. think about that. affordable health care is worse than a law that let slave owners get their run away slaves back. i mean these are quotes. i'm not making this stuff up. and here's one more that i have heard, i like this one. we have to, and i'm quoting here, we have to repeal this failure before it literally kills women, kills children,
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kills senior citizens. now, i have to say that one was from six months ago. i just want to point out we still have women, we still have children, we still have senior citizens.[applause] all this would be funny if it wasn't so crazy. and a lot of it is just hot air, a lot is just politics. i understand that. but now the tea party republicans have taken it to a whole new level because they are threatening either to shut down the government or shut down the entire economy by refusing to let america pay its bills for the first time in history.
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unless i agree to gut a law that will help millions of people. think about this. shutting down the government just because you don't like a law that was passed and found constitutional, and because you don't like the idea of giving people new access to affordable health care, what kind of idea is that? think about how that would impact maryland. lots of people would be badly hurt by a government shutdown. a lot of people around here wake up and go to serve their country every single day in the federal government. civilians who work at military bases. analysts, scientists, janitors, people who process new veterans and survivor benefits claims. they would all have to stay home and not get paid. and we all know it would badly damage the economy. whatever effect obamacare might have on the economy, it's far
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less than even a few days of government shutdown. even if you believe -- [applause] even if you believe that obamacare was going to hurt the economy, it won't hurt the economy as bad as a government shutdown. and by the way the evidence is that it's not going to hurt the economy, obamacare is going to help the economy. and it's going to help families and help businesses. as for not letting america pay its bills, i have to say no congress before this one has ever, ever in history been irresponsible enough to threaten default.
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to threaten an economic shutdown, to suggest america not pay its bills just to try to blackmail a president into giving them some concessions on issues that have nothing to do with the budget. i mean this is the united states of america. we are not a deadbeat nation. we don't run out on our tabs. we don't not pay our notes. we are the world's bedrock economy, the world's currency of choice, the entire world looks to us to make sure that the world economy is stable. you don't mess with that. [applause] you don't mess with that.
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and that's why i will not negotiate on anything when it comes to the full faith and credit of the united states of america. we are not going to submit to this kind of total irresponsibility. congress needs to pay our bills on time. congress needs to pass a budget on time. congress needs to put an end to governing from crisis to crisis. our focus as a country should be on creating new jobs and growing our economy and helping young people learn and restoring security for hardworking middle class families. [applause] this is not about the fortunes of any one party. this is not about politics. this is about the future of our country. if republicans do not like the law, they can go through the regular channels and processes
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to try to change it. that's why we have elections. so they can go through the normal processes and procedures of a democracy, but you do not threaten the full faith and credit of the united states of america. meanwhile, we are going to keep implementing the law. it's the law. like i said, there are going to be some glitches along wait. every law has hiccups when it's first starting off. people forget by the way, medicare part d, passed by my predecessor, george bush, passed by a republican house of representatives, the prescription drug bill passed into law 10 years ago, was even more unpopular than the affordable care act before it took effect.
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everybody was saying what a disaster it was going to be. the difference was democrats worked with republicans to make it work even better. steny remembers this, even though democrats weren't happy that the law wasn't paid for and was going to add hundreds of billions of dollars to the deficit, and we weren't negotiating a better deal with the drug companies, everybody worked once it was the law to try to make it work, and today about 90% of seniors like their prescription drug coverage. so we may not get that same level of cooperation from republicans right now, but the good news is i believe eventually they'll come around. because medicare and social security face the same kind of criticisms before medicare came into law, one republican warned that one of these days you and i are going to spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it once
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was like in america when men were free. that was ronald reagan. and eventually ronald reagan came around to medicare and thought it was pretty good and actually helped make it better. so that's what's going to happen with the affordable care act. and once it's working really well, i guarantee you they will not call it obamacare. [applause] here is a prediction for you. a few years from now when people are using this to get coverage, everybody's feeling pretty good about all the choices and competition that they've got, there are going to be a whole
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bunch of folks who say, yeah, i always thought this provision was excellent. i voted for that thing. you watch. if will not be called obamacare. but i'm always willing to work with anybody from either party. if you got a serious idea for making the affordable care act better or making our broader health care system better, i'm happy to work with you. because that's what the majority of the american people want. they don't want posturing, they want governing. they don't want politics, they want us to work together to make the lives of ordinary americans a little bit better, a little bit more secure. so, americans, i'm asking for
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your help. i need your help. we may have some very well funded opponents, we may have some very talkative opponents, but you're going to be the best, most credible messengers to spread the word about this law and all the benefits that the american people stand to get and have earned. so tell your friends, tell your families, get covered, get on that website, answer the questions of folks who don't know what this is all about, point them to healthcare.gov. teach them how to use the website. make sure they sign up. let's help our fellow americans get covered, then let's keep on working to rebuild the middle class. let's go and focus on creating
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more good-paying jobs. let's build more ladders of opportunity for everybody willing to work hard. [applause] >> let's make sure the united states of america keeps being a place where you can make it if you try. thank you, everybody. god bless you. [applause] ♪
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>> the general assembly heard from the president of the palestinian authority today. you can hear the speech in its and tort -- in its entirety online. here is a little of what he had to say. >> on the other hand, at the same time, the international community is called upon to remain vigilant. they must to come down and put an end to any actions on the ground that would undermine negotiations. i am referring first and foremost to continuing construction, activity in jerusalem.
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there is an international consensus among the countries of the world, the international code of justice, there is a consensus on that illegitimacy of such settlements. on government surveillance programs. house republicans and senate democrats speak with reporters about the continuing debate over federal spending, defunding the health care law, and a possible government shutdown. to --ent obama talks about health care at a community college in suburban washington. >> several live events to tell you about tomorrow. kirsten gillibrand will be among the speakers at a foreign on -- at 10:30 a.m. eastern. a discussion on this arming syria hoskin ago weapons hosted by the wilson center.
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at 2:00, a defense department briefing on its plans for a potential government shutdown. >> and 1998, book tv has shown over 40,000 hours of programming with top nonfiction authors, including bob woodward. >> we were going to do the book after he died. >> i always felt that people are more alike than they are different. the artist in me rose to that occasion that if i can create something that is so moving and permits the kind of distance that you sometimes need for modest painful, people understand. understanding is what is fundamental. >> nowhere good -- no argument is given to that effect. none of the relevant facts are
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considered and this is regarded as one of the half-dozen cases theory entailsr that the use of force was -- and throughout the fall, we are marking 15 years of book tv. a senate intelligence committee hearing on the government surveillance programs with testimony from national intelligence director james clapped her -- clapper. members focused on a proposal to allow civil liberties advocate to advise the fisa court. this is a little more than 2.5 hours. >> this meeting and hearing will come to order, please. bit earlierttle
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than we usually have them. i know members will be coming because it is a very important hearing. we usually meet at 2:30 p.m.. the cause of the interest, we have moved it up to 2:00. the committee meets today in open session to discuss attentional legislative changes to the foreign intelligence surveillance act. as well as to hear testimony and question witnesses on the unauthorized disclosure of classified information throughout the summer. the impact of those disclosures and to allow witnesses to address media reports about intelligence at invidious. let me begin by welcoming our witnesses. the director of national intelligence, james clapper, the director of the nsa, general keith alexander, and the deputy attorney general. thank you for being here. we will have a second panel as
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well. i will introduce the witnesses of that panel then. tim edgar of the watson institute for international studies at brown university. this committee has been conducting oversight over the previously classified intelligence collection sections 215 for several years. we have held numerous hearings dating back to 2007 on five that authorities. as themmittee, as well judiciary committee, have reviewed the legalities of these programs, have been briefed on their operation, and have been notified of problems with their implementation. this committee has previously informed all senators of
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additional classified information regarding these programs available for their review.rior to senate it is my opinion that the programsnce and other are lawful. they are effective and they are conducted under careful oversight by the department of justice, it nsa, office of the director of national intelligence, and by the fisa court. i also believe collecting timely and actionable intelligence is critical to our nation's security. nsa surveillance programs have prevented dozens of terrorist attacks against united states and numerous other countries around the world. this past weekend, we were
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terroristhat the threat remains. we watched in horror as a small group of determined gunmen mercilessly killed over 60 innocent men and women and children at the westgate mall in nairobi. the death and direct destruction, it could have been at a mall in the united states. shabaab, the al- terrorist group that has claimed credit for the attack has successfully recruited young man from the united states to come to somalia to train in there jihadist camps and the group formally merged with al qaeda in february of 2012. we know that al-shabaab has claimed that some of the attackers were from the united states and other western countries.
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the intelligence community has not confirmed this information. al-shabaab has primarily focused its past attacks on targets inside of somalia, it has demonstrated a willingness and ability to conduct attacks outside of somalia, such as the 2010 bombing in uganda that killed 76 people. it is no coincidence that one of the few specific cases to be declassified by the intelligence community to illustrate how it involve call records the prosecution of a man for providing material support to al-shabaab. according to the intelligence community, in october 2000 seven, nsa provided the fbi with call records that are collected under section 215
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of the patriot act. this information established a connection between a phone note to be used by an extremist overseas with ties to al qaeda east africa network and a san diego-based number. from the nsa search of call records ultimately led to an f b i investigation that resulted in a february 2013 for conspiring to provide material support to al- shabaab. this is just one of many examples of the need for this kind of intelligence collection. furthermore, i believe the leaks of classified programs and the way those leaks have been portrayed in the media often inaccurately or without appropriate context has led to
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an unfortunate, but very real amount of public skepticism. and distrust of the intelligence community. exists throughout the american public and it exists internationally. since edward snowden's leaks began in june, the intelligence committee has conducted several isa and on the
oversight regime in place to review these programs. i have also initiated a review of all intelligence programs but have the potential for capturing information about american citizens and other people inside the united states. additionally, we have begun drafting bipartisan legislation
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to increase public transparency of programs, strengthen congressional oversight, and limit authorities to add new protections for american rider seat. we are considering provisions to do the following. place limits on nsa phone metadata program, to change some of the preserve this program.
this program is constitutional and legal and i invite people listening to review the legal analysis of the recent five the court opinion written by judge egan, which is available on the five the court website. -- five the court -- fisa court website. expressly prohibit collection of the content of phone calls.
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codified the requirements that analysts must have a recent suspicion that a phone number is associated with terrorism and in order to even query the database . we are looking at reducing the length of time the records can be held. we will also add a requirement that every time nsa determines that there is a reasonable so --
suspicion that a phone number is associated with terrorism, not determination will be sent promptly to the court so that it can be reviewed. we will also require additional transparency are requiring annual reports on the number of phone numbers determined to have met that reasonable suspicion standard, the number of queries conducted each year, the number of times such queries result in
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fbi investigative leads each year, and the number of probable cause for and -- lawrence obtained because of intelligence gathered from these queries each year. the whole process, at least in terms of the numbers involved, would be made public. 702, which
authorizes the collection of electronic communications of non-american outside the country , we will place in statute a clear mandate that any query using a u.s. person's name or e- mail a dress can be done only intelligencele purposes. a record will be provided to the fisa court and to the congress.
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gap in thentified a government collection. the government learns that an authorized non-united states enters and remains in the united states, the nsa must cease collection on that target. these are known as roaming incidents. of course if collection is stopped, just as the individual may be of the greatest concern. tohave drafted a provision provide a limited period of seven days under which surveillance may continue while fisagovernment goes to court to seek a probable cause warrant to continue the collection. if a court order is not issued, all collection after the time the target is known to have entered the u.s. must be
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deleted. one would require senate confirmation of the director of the nsa. we believe it should require andirmation and he advised the consent process. although there has been substantial attention, other intelligence collection programs function under
the guidelines of executive 333 which do not mandate the same protections as does fisa. i believe we need to ensure that were texans governing intelligence collections outside are improved to adequately collect americans communications in a similar way. we are mandating in this bill
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that attorney general guidelines for these programs are updated an ongoingviewed on basis by the attorney general at least five days. the intelligence committee has begun reviewing all of these intelligence programs and we will continue to do so for the rest of the fall term. i know witnesses may have comments about these proposals and we welcome any additional suggestions you have for increasing transparency, making intelligence programs more to privacyand adding protections and public confidence. i note the administration statement for the record. we are talking about that right now. i happen to support it.
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i also invite you to speak about the leaks and initiated by mr. snowden that are now playing out on a weekly or daily basis in newspapers around the world. as well as any other claims concerning various intelligence activities. gentlemen, ofu, the intelligence community and the department of justice to lay the recorde and set straight about how intelligence fisaams are operated under and the care that is taken to abide by the law. it is clear to me that the public has a misperception and that must be correct did. we will hopefully make prudent changes to increase privacy and transparency, but i believe the majority of this committee the leaves that these programs are necessary for our nation's
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security. let me call and our distinguished vice chairman. >> thank you very much. our committee does not often have open hearings. it is important they have a chance to hear directly from the intelligence community. it is important that the intelligence committee have the opportunity to explain to the american people more fully in is in how essential fisa keeping this country safe. parte here in large because of the snowden links, there should be no doubt that those leaks have caused and will continue to cause exceptionally grave damage to our national security. mr. stone and will be responsible for that. there is no excuse for leaking
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classified information. the snowden makes are no exception. enemies, a hero to our but he is not a whistleblower. there were alternative avenues available to him to make his especiallyown, avenues leading to congress. instead, he violated his oath of secrecy and jeopardized the national security of this country. i believe he knew how serious a breach of trust it was. this information and fled the country and leaked it to the world. understand the investigation is ongoing and you will be limited as to what you can say, i hope you will bring us up-to- date with respect to the efforts of the department of justice. without disclosing classified information, i think the american people need to hear more about the damage of these
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leagues, including the inaccurate stories. the vital foreign partnerships that you depend on each and every day that of been impacted by these leaks. we are working very closely together to develop that bill and we will get there, it is important to recognize broken.a is not it is working exactly as congress understood. congress has extended the sunset for this section three times since september 11. regular and substantial
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oversight from all three branches of government, including this committee. there has been no intentional abuse of authorities. that is not to say that mistakes have not been made or there will not be future compliance issues regardless of how congress modifies these authorities. the fact that mistakes have been found and addressed by the many existing layers of oversight is further evidence that the process is working as intended. i think we are making very good progress on the bill that makes reasonable changes for more transparency. you and i share the goal of maintaining the same level of operational effectiveness and flexibility for the intelligence community while recognizing the privacy concerns about this collection. anyve strong objections to effort to move control of section 215 to any entity other
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than nsa. the telecommunications provider should not be given this added burden, especially because it would not enhance privacy. the committee has been waiting for technical assistance on potential bill language, but it has received nothing in writing from the administration. or describing a process and correctly can have a detrimental impact on collection. we need to get this right, but we cannot do so without your assistance. the committee is planning to act on this legislation next week. afternoon.hursday we need to hear from the administration prior to this markup. i look forward to hearing from >> gentlemen,day
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would you please rise and repeat the oath? that i willy swear give this committee the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth so help me god? thank you very much. director clapper, would you like to proceed? thank you so much for having us here today to talk about the way ahead. about the steps we are taking to make these programs more transparent while protecting our national security interest. thanks for your staunch leadership and stalwart support.
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i am joined today by the deputy attorney general and director of nsa. we each have statements and i will transition to general alexander. key part of is a the discussion our nation needs about legislation that provides the intelligence committee with authorities to collect critical foreign intelligence and to protect privacy and civil liberties. very much aware that the recent unauthorized disclosures have raised serious concerns about our intelligence activities. we know the public wants to understand how it's intelligence community uses it special tools and to judge whether we can be trusted to use them appropriately. we believe we have been lawful and the rigorous oversight has been effective.
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we welcome this opportunity to make our case to the public. as we engage in this discussion, i think it is important that our citizens know the unauthorized disclosure of details of these programs has been extremely damaging. these disclosures are threatening our ability to conduct intelligence and to keep our country safe. there is no way to erase or make up for the damage we know has already been done and we anticipate even more as we continue our assessment and as more revelations are made. before these unauthorized disclosures, we were always conservative about discussing the specifics of our collection programs. the more adversaries know about what we are doing, the more they avoid our surveillance. the disclosures have lowered the threshold for discussing these matters in public.
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to the degree that we can discuss them, we will. this public discussion should be based on inaccurate understanding of the intelligence community. who we are and what we do. manner in which our activities have been characterized has often been incomplete, inaccurate, or misleading. most americans realize the intelligence community exists to collect vital intelligence that helps protect our nation from foreign threats. we focus on covering the secret plans and intentions of our adversaries. but we do not do is spy on americans or spy indiscriminately on the citizens of any country. we only spy for valid foreign intelligence purposes with multiple layers of oversight to ensure we do not abuse our authority. this reality has been obscured
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in the current debate. this has led to a lowering of trust in the intelligence committee. we do understand the concerns on the part of the public. i am a vietnam veteran and i investigations of the 1970s later disclosed, some intelligence programs back then were carried out for domestic political purposes without proper oversight. canng lived through that, i assure american people that the intelligence community today is not like that. we operate within a robust framework of rigorous oversight involving all three branches of government. war, it made for an collection a lot easier to distinguish.
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unified.nications are a much lesser number of adversaries trying to do harm on the very same network using the same technologies. our challenge is to distinguish between these two groups of communicated. if we had an alarm bell that went off, our jobs a be a lot easier. that capability does not exist in the world of technology today. over the last three months, i have declassified and publicly released a series of documents related to section 215 and section 702. andid that to facilitate form public debate about the importance intelligence collection programs. in light of the unauthorized
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disclosures, the public interest far outweighs the damage to public security. they reflect the intelligence communities commitment to uncovering, reporting, and correcting any compliance matters that occur. we have had to adapt certain information -- redraft certain information. we will continue to declassify more documents. that is what the american people want and what the president has asked us to do and i believe it is the only way we can reassure our citizens that the intelligence community is using its tools appropriately. the rules of oversight that govern and ensure that we do what the people want us to do, protect our nation security and our people's liberties.
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spy on anyone except for valid foreign intelligence purposes. occasion, as you have described, we have made mistakes , some quite significant. these are usually caused by technical problems or human error. the national security agency is an honorable institution. the men and women who do this work are honorable people. natione citizens of this who care just as much about privacy as the rest of the public. they should be commended for their crucial and important work and protecting the people of this country, which has been made all the more difficult by the damaging disclosures. intelligence community
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stand ready to work in partnership with you to further protect our privacy and civil liberties. there are some principles we already agree on. we must always protect our sources and targets and liaison relationships. we must do a better job in helping the american people understand our job and why we do it. we mustte o commitment to respecting the civil liberties and privacy of every american. nindful of negative impact of over correcting the authorizations granted to the intelligence community. we face an unending array of threats to our way of life. more than i have seen in my 50 -- 50 years and intelligence. we welcome the balance discussion about security and civil liberties. we need to continue to protect both.
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we have had staff discussions and i think we have made technicalts for the writing. i am privileged today to represent the work of the dedicated professionals at the national security agency who employ the authorities provided by congress, the courts, and the executive branch to help defend this nation. if we are to have a serious debate about how nsa conducts its business, we need to step away from sensational headlines and focus on the facts. today, i would like to present facts about four key areas. who we are in terms of both our mission and our people.
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what we do. adapt to technology and the threat, take direction from leadership, use programs and tools, ensure compliance. i would like to cover what we have accomplished for our country with the tools we have been authorized and where do we go from here. first, who we are in our mission. nsa is a foreign intelligence agency with two missions. he collect foreign intelligence of national security interest and we protect certain sensitive information in u.s. networks. nsa contributes to the security of our nations, its armed forces, and our allies. nsa accomplishes this mission law protecting civil liberties and privacy. nsa operates within the authorities granted by the president, congress, and the courts.
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proud of what nsa does an even more proud of these great americans and what they do for this nation. the national security agency employees taken no stupid tech and defend the constitution of the united states -- take an oath to defend the constitution of the united states. just like you, they will never forget the moment terrorist killed 2000 996 americans in new york and pennsylvania, and the pentagon. they witnessed the first responders. that is one of the things that has been in the front of the nsa lobby. a picture of those first responders holding the american flag and passing it off to our military.
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that is what we have done. employees -- more than 6000 nsa personnel have deployed in support of forces in iraq and afghanistan. there's is a noble cause. they are the true heroes. nsa prides itself on its highly skilled workforce. we are the largest employer of mathematicians in the united states. mathematicians some 966 phd's, and 4374 computer scientist. we have linguists and more than 120 language. they are americans and they take
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their privacy and civil liberties seriously. technology. to today's telecommunication system is literally one of the most complex systems ever devised i mankind. and other adversaries hide in the global networks, use the same communications networks as everyone else and take ,dvantage of familiar services facebook, twitter. easy fory has made it them. we must develop and apply the best analytic tools to succeed at our mission. we take guidance from our political leadership. nsa direction comes from national security needs as defined by the nation's senior leaders. nsa does not decide what topics to collect and analyze. is collection and analysis
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driven by the national intelligence priority framework and received informal tasking. we do understand that electronic surveillance capabilities are powerful tools in the hands of the state. that is why we have extensive mandatory internal training, automated checks, and an expensive -- extensive regime of internal an extra oversight. we use lawful programs and tools to do our mission. the authorities we have been granted and the capabilities we have developed help keep our nation safe. since 9/11, we have disrupted terrorist attacks at home and abroad using capabilities informed by the lessons of 9/11. programness record fisa focuses on defending the
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homeland by linking foreign and domestic threats. focuses on two acquiring foreign intelligence, including critical information concerning international terrorist organizations are targeting non-us persons who are regionally believed to be outside the united states. nsa also operates under -- in accordance with the provisions. this is -- it is important to -- we aren order to required to obtain a court order based on a probable cause showing that the prospective target of surveillance is a foreign power or agent of a foreign power. the majority of its -- thesees activities
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.uthorities are powerful we take our responsibility seriously. we ensure compliance. we repeatedly train our entire workforce and privacy protections and the proper use of capabilities. we do make mistakes. the vast majority of incidents reflect the challenge, very specific rules of ever-changing tech knowledge he. compliance incidents with very rare exception are unintentional and reflect the sorts of errors that will occur in any complex system of technical activity. the press claimed evidence of thousands of privacy violations. this is false and misleading. according to the independent inspector general, there've only been 12 substantiating -- substantiated cases.
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these cases were referred to the department of justice for potential prosecution, discipline. we hold ourselves accountable every day. most of these cases involve improper tasking regarding foreign persons and foreign places. i am not aware of any intentional or willful violations of the statute, which is designed to be most protective of the privacy interest of u.s. persons. of the 27 hundred 76 violations noted in the press, about 75% are not violations of court approved procedures at all, but rather detection of valid foreign targets the traveled into the united states. you mentioned--
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them chairman. -- these are not compliance incidents. the court asked us to track those and report those so that we can show when they do come into the country, that we shut down the collection right away. were roamers.2776 clear theo start to air on actual compliance incidents. the vast majority of the actual compliance incidents involve foreign locations and foreign at judy's. -- foreign activities. i think that is important to note as a sidebar, we hold ourselves to the same standards
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overseas in terms of compliance. this system cannot be used .illfully by anyone we hold them accountable. if our folks do that, we hold them accountable. collects before any information is even obtained, used, or shared outside the united states. the small number that does include a u.s. person, a typical incident involves a person overseas involved with a foreign organization who is determined to be a u.s. person. the majority of our incidents our u.s. persons that were overseas that we did not know was the u.s. person. we still call that a compliance
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incident and we corrected and delete the data. despite the difference, we treat incident the same. we detect, we address, and we remediate. we remove information from our databases in accordance to the rules. finally, we report to congress, to the courts, and to the administration. ourselves accountable and keep others informed so they can do the same. nsa has a privacy compliance program. any leader of a large complex organization will be proud of. we welcome an ongoing discussion about how the public can going forward have increased information about nsa compliance program and its posture much the same way all three branches of government have today. what we have accomplished in our country.
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nsa existing authorities and programs have helped connect the dots, working with the broader for theence community good of the nation our people. the programs have contributed to understanding and disrupting 54 terror related events, 20 five in europe, 11 in asia, five in africa, and 13 in the united states. this was no accident. this was not coincidence. these are the direct result of a dedicated workforce, appropriate policy created in the wake of 9/11 to make sure 9/11 never happened again. 23 september,ding there were 972 terror related deaths in kenya, pakistan, afghanistan, syria, yemen, and iraq.
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1030 people were injured in the same countries. i have been talking about, we need these programs to protect this nation to ensure we do not have the same statistics here. the global system is optimized with today's technology on a global network. our analytic tools are effective at finding terrorist communication in time to make a difference. they are what we need for cybersecurity. this is how we see in cyberspace, identify threats, and defend networks. reforms, on nine august, the president laid out some specific steps to increase confidence of the american people. ways toways looking for better protect privacy and security. we have improved over time our
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ability to reconcile our technology weather operations and with the rules and .uthorities we will continue to do so as we go forward and strive to improve how we protect the american people, their privacy, and their security. regarding the telephone metadata makers thelicy executive and legislative branches will ultimately decide whether we want to sustain or dispense with the tool designed to detect terrorist lots -- plots. different implementations of the program can address the need, but each should be scored against several key attributes. privacy and civil liberties must be protected. be made in a timely matter so that in the most urgent cases, results can support disruption of imminent terrorist attacks. terrorist planning can extend
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for metadata repository must extend back for some period of time. repository of metadata is comprehensive enough to ensure responses can indicate with high confidence any connection to terrorist associated member may have two other persons who are engaged in terrorist act to buddies -- activities. we must preserve these foundational attributes of the program. entertain as you reports of the fisa court, operational costs should the observed so there are no delays. conclusion, nsa look forward
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to supporting the discussion of reforms. whatever changes are made, we will exercise our authorities dutifully, just as we have always done. partnership information will change how we operate and what people know about us. the leaks will not change the egos of the nsa workforce, which is dedicated to finding and reporting what our customers need to keep it safe in the manner compliant with the laws and rules but authorize and limit in sa activities and indicate embassy protections we as a nation enjoy. indicate in sa protections we as a nation enjoy. i look forward to your questions.
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>> thank you for inviting us here today to talk about the 215 business program and fires up. fisa -- 215 business program and fires up. --fisa. the meta-data does not include the content phone calls or addresses of any party or cell site location. moreover, the vast majority of information obtained under this around is never reviewed. searchernment can only if they believe it is associated with certain terrorist
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organizations. only a small number of analysts can make that determination, and it must be documented so it can be reviewed by a supervisor and later for compliance purposes. the program is conducted by fisa court, which must reapproved every 90 days. it has been reapproved on 34 separate occasions by 14 individual judges of the fisa court. each reapproval indicates the conclusion that it was and satisfies constitutional requirements. all threeinvolves branches of government, including the fisa court and the .udiciary committees
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numerous entities are involved. compliance the office of counsel, the inspector general, and the department of justice are all involved in this process. every 90 days they review queries to determine whether suspicion has been met. they meet every 90 days with operators to discuss the operation of the program, and any concerns that may arise. we report any compliance to the court immediately. we also provide reports that
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include review of compliance with suspicion as well as other issues. with respect to congress we have reported any compliance problems andhe intelligence judiciary committees. in 2009 the committee received fisa documents and submissions. tose have been declassified give the public a better understanding of how to respond to problems once they are identified. since i last appeared before you, we have gone through great explain publicly why the program is lawful. the department of justice released a white paper providing the administration's legal views
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on the program. court has reported the opinion of the most recent authorization. see theican public can fisa courts reasoning and legal views as well. our white paper and fisa court agreement on the program. under section 215 there must be reasonable grounds to assume it is relevant to protect against international terrorism. the court's opinion and our white paper explained, relatives is a broad term that was intended to establish a low bar for the collection of his miss records. -- of his miss records.
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-- business records. the meaning of relevance is similarly brought in other areas and contexts under the law. information can be relevant where it reasonably could lead to other material that could dare on an issue in the case. courts have held large repositories can satisfy a where a searchrd is necessary to identify critical documents. rationale of the program, and it was recognized by the fisa court. court found it was relevant
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because it is necessary to allow in sa to identify telephone terrorists and other persons. this might not be feasible without access to both metadata. connections might not be feasible if the data were not collected for a sufficient amount of time because telecommunication providers currently have no statutory obligation to retain that data. complying they must also comply with the constitution. the supreme court decision is direct lay on point.
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say -- they convey information, have no expectation of privacy. some have questioned the applicability of this because it irty years over th ago. the recent report addressed that issue. grouping together a large number of similarly situated individuals cannot result in a fourth amendment interest springing into existence. i understand there is some interest in legislating reforms
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to the programs and other aspects of fisa. we welcome having public debate and discussion about whether the current version of 215 and other versions strike the right balance between national security and privacy of our citizens, both of which are important. we look forward to addressing this issue. much.nk you very we will keep around to five minutes because there is another panel. i want to ask one question. called the press has this a surveillance program. the general belief is everyone is surveyed. description is
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surveillance. lee's discuss exactly what is collected as metadata. collected is much a phone would see on record. it doesn't include the name of the person called, the location of the person. it doesn't include any content. it doesn't include financial information or anything like that. just the number that was called, the date it was called, and the length it was called. if you want additional information, you would have to get other legal process to find that information and acquire it. an important point is while a great deal of metadata is collected, very little is actually looked at. it can only
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be looked at when there is a reasonable suspicion for a specific phone number to be queried in this database. calls canhat number be looked at. through looking for whatever connection we might .hink is interesting >> thank you. give us a quick update with respect to mr. snowden on whether or not the chinese and russian governments are cooperating in returning him to us? has a know you noted in the beginning, there is not much i can say about this because it is still under investigation. charges that have been
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filed against mr. snowden. one theft of government property, one disclosure of classified intelligence. those charges are pending. contact with the government of china as well as to tryernment of russia to make him stand trial for those charges an answer for what he has done. are working on that. it has not been successful to date. the public understanding the importance of these programs programs and the way they work, the best example i have used is a point in time when these programs do not exist , september 11, 2001. are very familiar with facts leading up to that, particularly with respect to one of the 9/11
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hijackers located in san diego. can you walk us through what we with respect to that individual who was one of the 9/11 hijackers who committed the attacks on america and explain how if these programs were in effect we might have an beenssful -- might have successful in determining who he was and preventing the attack. >> let me start with how we collected on those communications. was overseas in the middle east, and that has been reported. sa intercepted those communications, it was assumed intercepted those communications it was assumed because one and was in the
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middle east he other end was also in the middle east. we had no idea he was in san diego. fisa database,he the probability we could have seen that by putting it into the in my personal opinion is very high, and there is probability we may have seen other portions of that. businessne reason fisa record was created, to close that seem. important point. is foreign. the fbi is in the united states. the fbi was working the domestic heart. -- domestic part. we did not connect the dots. the business record gives us a venue to put that information understood oversight -- under
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strict oversight and look into , seene plotting against us key numbers, pass them to the to take on in their investigation. in my opinion if we had that prior to 9/11 we would have known about the plot. that's my opinion. >> plot foiled may not be the .nly metric for gauging there is also the peace of mind metric with the recent threat with the closing of the domestic facilities overseas. indication of the particular nexus in the united states.
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the group was reviewed and found to be negative. from the standpoint of eliminating the possibility of the united states connection, i think that's an important attribute. law, when onent of these so-called mistakes refers that you referred to in your testimony -- i believe you said there were less than readouts and that occurred -- current law requires you immediately report those to the fisa court, which you do. does not require that you report those mistakes to congress, but you do so on you will and i assume have no objection to us changing sa -- nsae that in report to the administration as
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well as to congress for any of mightinstances that occur. >> i have no objection to that. i think it makes sense. add so it is all possible areas in our us aren't too. only a small portion really -- so it is in all possible areas. only a small portion really applies. >> we are going have five-minute rounds. >> thank you, madam chair. i prepared a statement, so i am going to use my question time to make a statement. compare what the controls , analysis, data
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sharing between branches of government, congressional participation and oversight around the years of 2001 and beyond that, until we passed the , the patriot act, there is a world of difference so large it is almost impossible to explain. i am all for public meetings, but one thing i really care about is that we get it right. and that we get it right within the government and that we don't days whenck to the the chairman and vice chairman of the intelligence committee are deemed to be brief in a situation of house and senate, basically told nothing, and then
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been reached,have which releases the administration to do whatever they want -- to have been briefed, which releases the administration to do whatever they want. days, andrough those they were bad. we were helpless. we couldn't even approach doing because nobody would meet with us. today, and iferent think it's because of the solid laiddwork which has been for fisa and other areas. there are some who want to outsource some of the work and fora data -- mega data,
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example to telecommunications, and we gave them link it right.ty, but it was no people were involved, just machinery, but i think it would be the worst he we could do -- i feel so strongly about this. we have a system which works. is a system that works after a short time of being in place. there are any .illful leaks maybe that indicates we have work to do, but in the main
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work, we do it right. that's all i care about. i like telephone companies. we have all kinds of investigations going on. data brokers feast on available information, which telecommunications companies collect by the work they do, and they pay top dollar for information about people commercially to their advantage and to the disadvantage of all the rest of us. nobody can say everybody in government is perfect, but when i look at the three people before me and i think of the to your i have made
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of es, the intensity accepting responsibility and dealing with it toughly, i don't a lot of people are going to understand fisa thomas how it works, and the powers they have, but we do here, and that is what gives me a very yes, thense that chairman and the vice chairman have suggested a number of , many or most of which i agree with to approve buildocess, but you don't and build another when next-door because because you found a mistake. take what you have got, .hich is very sound in my mind
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i trusted to do what i care and then you make amendments as you need to do that. obviously, people can make they are reported immediately, and it is a fair and honorable process. i say this not just to be your which i am not interested in that. i am, but i am not professionally. if we can make it better, let's make it better. for people who say that headline
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made me nervous, let that not keep us from our job to and gondation saves about our business. pre-k's thank you very much. -- >> thank you very much.
>> you ticked off these .uccesses my understanding is the majority the details are still open. the americanate people don't have an understanding of that.
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this country was born of people who have a deep skepticism of intonment and its invasion private life. irs scandalthis taking place, and what we are certainly is involved in that category of mistrust you have. i'm going to be focused on the privacy of the american people but at the same time the goals whichping people safe, you have done very well.
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you reiterated there would be a if the intelligence community had not done what it did. they had done what they could to take us down this road. >> thank you very much. >> let me commend you for holding this open hearing. this allows the american people to be part of an informed debate , and it iss the being done without disclosing operation,the secret and i commend you for doing that. you talked about the damage done
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by recent disclosures. i believe this would never be disclosed. senate pointed out even a quick read of history shows in america the truth always managed to come out. notwithstanding the
ofraordinary patriotism professionals. built aership collective system that deceived the american people. time and time again the american about were told one thing domestic surveillance in public um while doing something else
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in private. the agencies based terrible consequences that were not planned for. trust is going to take time to rebuild. mind this undermines the intelligencellect
on real threats. a joint testimony lames the media and others, but this could have an avoided if leadership had been straight with the american people and not acted like it could last forever. i want to note the markup would
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e held next week. they introduced bipartisan reform legislation as well, and we will advance our proposal, and we will have a vigorous debate on those issues. it's my practice to notify you in advance so there won't be any about the type of issue we are going to get into. they have asked whether the nsa has ever collected or made lands plans to collect cell phone information in bulk. or clapper25 erect
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provided a response to this -- onon as well as others july 25 we provided a response to this question as well as others. receiving cell phone data and has no plans to do so. i would notify of intent to
obtain data. >> if i might -- >> i think we are familiar. that's not the question i am asking. --m asking has the in essay the nsa ever collected or made lands to collect this
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information. could you give me an answer? >> we did. please allow me to continue. oneaffirm the commitment june 20 5, 2013. 25, 2013.- june we made clear that notice to the would bea briefing required if the government were to seek cell phone information
as part of detailed records. additional details were also provided in the classified supplement to director slappers pers in response. what i don't want to do is put out in an unclassified form anything that is classified. we send both of those to you.
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i saw what he said, and i agree. >> if you are responding by not answering because you think it is classified, that is your right. the american people have the right to know if the nsa will be collecting this information. madam chairman, the word
trust has come up a couple times here, and that is clearly something we have to deal with that makes it difficult to convince the american people that very significant measures have been taken to protect their privacy. thats disturbing to me is despite the information that has been provided, made available to media, it iso the
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not resulted in always accurate analysis by the media or understanding by the public. maybe they don't want to believe it. i was shocked in listening to a major network program having discussed previously with general alexander and others of outlet that that media had been given relevant classified information to certain people in charge of the have in ag, only to discussion a comment by the lead
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individual. they are listening to everything we say. knowing that the leadership had information,curate yet because you have to throw to people who refuse to look at the facts, this continues. i don't know how we address this problem. i commend you for having open hearings. presst know how many people will go away and at least accurate analysis of what has been said here.
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it's very frustrating to know we have programs that have been approved by congress, that have been approved by the president of the united states, that are saving american lives and their efforts to compromise those programs to convince a non- trusting public. i guess my question goes to this, and that is, we will be presented with a number of proposals in terms of how to further protect american people's privacy. to know and like what i would like the committee to know is your clear and on politicized-- un conclusions as to what type of compromise would be the result if we implemented these reforms. what is the consequence of
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trying to convince the public that apparently doesn't want to theonvinced -- what is consequence in terms of compromise of operations, loss of life for those who have dedicated their lives to try to protect americans? what are we losing by having to go through this tortured getcise of continuing to feedback that no matter what we providedatter what is -- do we need another organization to oversee the fisa court? how can we trust the second if we cannot put our trust in this president, that what we are trying to do is provide privacy for the american
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people and save their lives from like 9/11.uation we will probably not always be successful, but had we not had these programs in place, i would hate to think about what we and the talking about that if you had the capability to stop it, why would you be prevented from doing it? my time is up. >> thank you very much. you don't want an answer. do any of you want to answer? i think you have eloquently captured the level of frustration we have on how to counter a popular narrative that has been a frustration for us.
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we have done some risk terms of opening up as much as we can, recognizing the importance of to --on c and restoring trust importance of transparency and restoring trust. it is important to our adversaries as well. to the extent we have these , adversaries go to school, too. i think it's important to comment that fundamentally if we don't have the trust and confidence of the american noule, all that is for ght, and i think we have aired on being open, but you are right. there are risks here. >> i agree with what you said.
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professionaln my and personal opinion if we did is a much15, there higher probability of a terrorist act would occur, and i am concerned about that. there are some measures we could is thehe real issue american people don't have a for them that we can have classified discussions and say, here is what we are going to do -- don't have a for him -- a forum, where we could have classified discussions and say, here is what we are doing. a ross says where we can bring information that allows us to share that with the fbi and go after bad people who are trying to do us harm. we have to have a process.
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i know everyone would like to know what is going on, but at the end of the day, i would much rather be sitting here today defending what we are doing then being here telling you why we dots onceconnect the again. >> thank you very much. you, madam chair. when i started serving on this committee, i determined early on
our surveillance laws needed rough form. i have been proud to lead the detailsnd now that more of the surveillance programs and legal justifications have we are seeing the status quo is unacceptable and that reforms are needed. we have heard a lot of talk
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about rebuilding trust and creating transparency. we can rebuild trust with real reform. we introduced legislation that would drive reform. working withd to all the members of this committee. . might turn to you initially the recently released documents that layout the relevance to mean the government can collect phone records of millions of on a daily basis. if i could i would like to ask you three quick yes or no questions. there upper limits on the number of telephone records you can collect? it a goal of the nsa to collect phone records of all americans? do you believe analysis gives the authority to collect other
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kinds of records in addition? if you could give me a yes or no answer to those three questions, i would appreciate it. >> i'm going to ask because i am -- i would ask the deputy attorney general to make sure i say each of these exact the right. exactly right. to my knowledge there is no
upper limit. i am not sure what the other question was. >> isn't the goal to collect the phone records of all americans? >> i believe it is in the nations best interest to put the phone records in a locked box. the way we comply would ensure nation,ecurity for this so the oversight and compliance regime is going to be key to that.
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does this give us authority to collect new records? the court has said hold off if you want to do cell site data. business records can be defined to be financial statements, utility bills. is a long list. legitimatethere is concern. opinionthe fisa court does not allow any record to be in bulk. what it really hinges upon is what we are looking for in the first phase. -- in the first place. to find conversations between people who could be reasonably
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connected to terrorist organizations and the people they are associated with. the only way you could do that is to collect all these records so you have the haystack to look through, and you only look at parts you have reason to look at. there are lots of kinds of records that you might have that kind of structure, and you would not get the court to approve it because the same necessity would ot be present. it's all going to rise and fall on what you are looking at. >> you don't think it has given them authority? >> if they can show it is what isy to find relevant, but you have to go through that showing. not all bold records. it depends on the purpose.
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>> would you agree to declassify the whole history of the program? >> not having read it, i would like to take it off the record. i think we are pushing transparency, and we will declassify as much as we can. would rather read these documents and get some advice from general counsel about that.
>> my time is running out. >> i ppreciate it. >> this is an interesting issue to try to balance, especially when you listen to people back home and try to explain to them. i think people understand the need to provide for the security of our country, though as the years go by we tend to forget the threats we face.
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on the other hand we understand people have these privacy expectations. are uncomfortable with the notion that the government could see every phone call they made and everyone they call. this combined with general distrust of the government and there is a history in this country of abusing intelligence for political purposes. these are things people are question isout. the how do we balance all this. i understand the idea that they can see who you are calling. they could be targeted. if i told them of osama bin laden is making regular calls and it is not his stock rocher,
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we would want to know. i want to talk about the safeguards. noticed in some of the information that has been made that there is a significant amount of resources privacy.o safeguarding the scope toss ensure information from thatcans is protected from sort of thing. >> we do have extensive safeguards to ensure civil liberties and privacy of our people. everybodyn by that is .t nsa is trained given the nature of the internet today, the probability you would
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run across a u.s. person's information is high. we train our people through a series of rogue rams about what they do and what they have to do when they run across the u.s. person's information, but it doesn't stop there. if a person is putting something on collection, someone audits what they are doing and why they are doing it, so if i was on a position and started to target somebody in the united states, a flag would go up. i would have to show the itionale and the authority was using. we train them on the tools they have, the safeguards in the tools.
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i will give you an example. to assure we do not make a typographical error and go after my data if it is one number away from a terrorist. less than 300 approved, so there is a list of less than 300 numbers that could be used for that database. only those would work. it would have to match the list, and then the query can be conducted. leakedrmation has been to the press, potentially for political purposes. explain to me the safeguards in decided theybody orted to target somebody
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release information about individual americans. what are the safeguards in place? >> there are a couple. first, the ability to collect. you would have to have the tools. you would have to go to the fisa court in order to go after an american person. >> what about the technology. courier to provide that information. we would have to go to them to get it. to get into the google server, somebody would have to hack that. if you usethe areinfrastructure, chances you are going to get caught. you would face jail time. >> who would you get caught i by? >> by the system and the people.
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order tollect that in get the information, you have to put them in a system that is .udited we actually have people who check on what you are doing. >> so it's impossible for an individual to access that information without others knowing they are doing it? >> it's not impossible. caught doing it. those were overseas. collecting and overseas number is a lot harder. and the united states they would come up automatically. i cannot say 100%, because there
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is always going to be a case. fisaven't found one under where someone has willingly and nowingly done that. we are looking for those. i am sure someone will one day make a mistake. hopefully it will be unintentional. we will catch them. we will report it. they will go through training or lose their claims. >> thanks. thanks for having this hearing. i want to make a couple comments. i am relatively new to this committee, but i have been tremendously impressed by the workforce of the intelligence committee. feel sometimes a lot of
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rushed -- brushed with some of the claims made by the press. that being said, i appreciate senator rubio trying to drill , andinternal precautions many of us in the committee have reviewed these as well. some of the numbers you have laid out with the gross number is important. i do think we have to acknowledge as we sort through of americanlot people have lost trust in what you are doing. saying it isnators ok may not regain trust.
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even with reports to congress and the administration, i worry sometimes we seem to demonize anyone who serves in public service and assume the government cannot do anything right. it doesn't enhance the general who servesof anyone in the public sector. i just want to affiliate with senator walker's comments. i spent a good deal of time in the telecom industry before i , and there isvice something that appears about sending this data off. what i need to see a lot more , if you werebout to keep information, i know
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countries in europe have chosen this -- how you don't actually expand privacy violations, because a number of those able to keep track of this data will be at a variety of locations. from litigation standpoint than a series of other concerns, it raises questions. i want to get to a question. i know senator king and senator levin have in working on some ideas. one thing i saw in your wasimony, director clapper checkotion of an outside somewhere along the process, whether it was in relation to the fisa court as we continue to think about new definitions of privacy and technology.
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i think we have to understand at that even if time these protections meet a high standard, if there was a great deal of loss of trust and that we have to be able to think about some tools outside of to helpovernment reevaluate what you do. >> i think we are generally in form of theth some court that could be outside the there to, who could be render a perspective on questions of law. do you want to add to that? >> this is an area where we are in agreement, but i think we have to be careful because we want to preserve the ability to have an advocate come in and really have that piece. some
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sort of nonlegal issue, an important legal issue the court would like another point of view on, large programs could be done, but much of what happens is very retained. when there is not a person on the other side that should be allowed. >> my concern is going back to the earlier comments, he said, you have a lot of americans who would like to share a little bit stop the you cannot bad guys from knowing about that. we should be able to find some guys who can make it inside the town hall and get a little more briefing. they are not officially aligned within the government structure,
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but i think it would reassure americans and continue to allow you to do the important job you do. urge that we think about this not just in a legalistic way but that we give appropriate consideration to what we have thought about, because we have to acknowledge this challenge. great point.at's a that's one of the roles of the privacy and civil liberties oversight board, which could serve and a way for them to attest to the american people as a separate party whose focus is right to see and civil liberty, so there may be something to that. >> thank you very much senator
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warren. >> senator warner's question is a perfect segue into the dirt -- into the question i was going to ask director clapper. you and i first worked together in 2004 when, along with senator joe lieberman, i drafted the intelligence reform and terrorism prevention act. that created the very job that you now hold. it also quoted an important safeguard, which was the creation of the privacy and civil liberties oversight board. the board has been slow to get appointed and fully staffed up, but i think it would be helpful if you explain to the committee the role that the board is now playing with regard to the intelligence programs. thanks, senator collins. you are quite right to recall
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the formation of the irtpa. the privacy and civil liberties board is up and running. they have all of their members aboard. we are providing support to them, in terms of administrative support, since they have to operate in a classified environment, but i want to stress the fact that they are asy much independent, just the special review group that the white house, the president has appointed. i am supporting them administratively and with andect to their housing access to classified information, but they do not report to me. i just want to make that clear. the board could serve in the role that general alexander suggests. i would caveat by saying that their trigger right now is limited to only counterterrorism matters.
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if they were to take on a broader charter, a broader mantle, that charter would need to be changed. that theytions are serious andry conscientious about taking on this role now that they are fully up and running. embarked on a series of visits, orientation visits. they are quite anxious to be active and to be useful. i think as this concept matures, they perhaps could serve a broader purpose. >> thank you. general alexander, you have been very clear today that the bulk collection program does not involve the collection of the content of telephone calls. there is, as many of my colleagues have indicated, a great misunderstanding about that among the american public,
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and i hope that this hearing has put that to rest once and for all. you have also made clear that you are a foreign intelligence agency. what i think would be helpful for us all to better understand a, what happens when you get hit from a number that is associated with a foreign terrorist and you query the system, adnd an american's what number comes up -- happens then? do you still pursue it? does it get turned over to the fbi? is a court order required? what is the standard for that court order? >> senator, thanks.
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it you bring out a great point in terms of what we do. we are looking at a person overseas. associated with al qaeda or associated groups. we have some connection in a phone number to that person. we prove that that phone connects to them with a reasonable, articulable suspicion. we document that. we can then go in and query it. is find out, what are the connections to that number? what does the network look like? we can take that and compare it with some of our information from overseas to see if there are other connections with other numbers that are of interest or would be of interest. he cannot do anything beyond cannot do anything beyond that with the u.s. persons part. it was a great question earlier fbiur job is to support the in their investigation by providing them the information they need on the domestic side
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to then go and look at that number. they have to go through all the appropriate court in war and processes, the national security letters, whatever is appropriate, and they do that well. we provide that to them. what we can do with our capabilities is speed, agility, and the foreign nexus. they cannot get that any other way. the partnership with the fbi in this case has been extraordinary. >> thank you. i think, madam chairwoman, that is a really important point that has not been well understood, that if an american is identified, it then is turned and if ahe fbi, wiretap is needed at that point, it goes to a federal court or the fisa court. i believe the standard is probable cause at that point,
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once you have done the first identification. mr. cole, if i am wrong on any of that, if you would go ahead -- >> like that is correct, senator. if we want to get the content of any communications, we have to go to the fisa court. we have to show probable cause that there is reason to believe this person is an agent of a this ispower, and that not a foreign intelligence investigation. if it is criminal, we have to go to a regular article three court and show there is probable cause to believe this person is involved in a crime. we will get that kind of evidence with the order of the court to listen. this is a neutral magistrate and a probable cause standard. >> thank you. >> thank you, senator collins. , were theenator king first year. i want you to know how much your service on this committee is appreciated. it is extraordinarily valued.
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thank you for being so patient. >> thank you. it is often an advantage to be last, madam chairwoman. you can hear all that has gone before. gentlemen, if a historian looks back at this time, i think he would say that september 11 changed the world. that is a kind of commonplace observation, but in the history of warfare, and change the world because it pointed out that we were in a different kind of war than we were before. we used to defend ourselves first with forts, then with antiaircraft. it strikes me in the new world of international terrorism, our principal line of defense is intelligence. antiaircraftsld that takes out some guy coming in on a steamer with an atomic bomb in a suitcase. it has got to be intelligence. that is what makes what you are doing so incredibly important in what i think is a fundamentally different world of conflict. therefore, you have to be
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bestowed with certain powers, at that is where we run into the constitution, and rightfully so. we want to serve the preamble. we want to provide for the common defense and ensure the domestic tranquility. on the other hand, we have the fourth amendment and the various protections of privacy. what we are struggling with is how to balance those two. i happen to believe that collecting these records is vitally important. you have indicated the number of plots that have been foiled. is, as you know, a concern about where these records sit. we have had a number of discussions. i am struggling to find a way to andsfied the public's trust also the kind of institutional compromisingout what it is that you do. general alexander, you mentioned a couple of times today the audit. you used the phrase "the flags
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come up." here is a suggestion, and you can respond to it off the cuff or respond to your. -- respond later. to come up in the nsa and have the audit, but what if the flag also comes up in the fisa office? or in the privacy board so that there is some outside record of the fact that somebody is going into that database? be -- the fisa court can say, nsa, you have given us the records for the wet 30 days, but here noticed there was a 43rd time that was not in your report. is something like that technically feasible? it doesn't have to be another group or human being, but it could simply be a technical part of the program so that someone else outside of the nsa is alerted to the fact that the database is being queried. >> senator, great set of points.
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on the business record to 15 and in 702, those are all documented. all the queries are documented. anybody who touches that data, a record is made of it. justice and others can actually go through. there is no problem sharing that with whomever, from a technical perspective. you could probably set up a process. -- issue that senator rubio if i could clarify a point -- we cover things not only through the fisa court, which have those kind of restrictions, but also the rest of the foreign intelligence system. was responding to was looking at the foreign side of this also and saying, if somebody tried to use that against us or did it inappropriately, he also have tools there. i was trying to bring that up. in this case, on the 215, there is extensive documentation of
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every query that goes into the database. takes all the auditing place within the executive branch of the government. the genius of our constitution is checks and balances so they involve different branches. that is why i say, could the flag will up at the fisa court as well -- go up at the fisa court as well? it would not be permission. it would just to be the fact that a query has occurred. it would make me feel more comfortable, as opposed to putting the records in a whole separate body. >> senator, i see no technical reason or operational reason not to. yes. >> thank you very much. one further question -- mr. cole, you mentioned, and i think it is important, that the administration is actually supportive of some additional advocacy function within this process. i think that is important for our consideration. that could be part of our bill.
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i certainly hope you would submit to us language, which will express how far you think it should go, under what circumstances, and i understand what you're saying is that the advocate should not be on every single case, but should be available to advocate for the public, if you will, or the privacy interests and policy cases. i commend you for taking that position. i hope you will give us some help in terms of specific language. i now, that is not in our potential bill. i would like to see some language that perhaps pursues that. >> we would be happy to work with you on that, senator. we think that could really be an added feature and strike the right balance and give a perspective that could be important. >> thank you, madam chair. >> thank you very much, senator. we appreciate it. that completes our first round. two senators want a second round.
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however, we have two nongovernmental witnesses, i think, that are important to hear. haven't done that before. -- we haven't done that before. i have to be on the floor at 5:00. senatorbe willing, if chambliss could stay, to give you a second round after the two witnesses. senator wyden, senator udall, is that agreeable? >> i appreciate your courtesy. i have two questions. i want to be gracious to colleagues. i can get them both done within five minutes. >> why don't you do them now, and then we will not keep them -- anybody disagree? madam chairman, i think all of us have additional questions. -- ink it is a little thought you were going to do one round, go to the next panel, but i certainly -- >> in deference to senator
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collins, i will not ask these questions now. i too have to be on the floor. we just passed our helium legislation. senators are happy with that. perhaps i can find a way to get to the floor and back, but otherwise, i will pose them in writing. >> thank you very much. gentlemen, thank you. we will proceed with the second panel. wittis and tim edgar. -- ben wittes and tim edgar.
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>> quickly. mr. wittes? ok, i'm going to introduce the two of you. then we will begin with wittes and go to edgar, if that is agreeable. benjamin wittes is a senior fellow at the brookings institution. he is editor-in-chief of "law fair," a highly regarded
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national security law blog. this blog is frequently read by members and staff. i understand that he has on occasion consulted with our committee staff. thank you for your frequent commentary and your availability. you are the author of several books. a member of the hoover institution task force on national security and law. you have previously served as an editorial writer for "the washington post," specializing in legal affairs, and as a reporter and news editor at "legal times." you are a graduate of oberlin college. tim edgar is a visiting fellow at the watson institute for it -- for international studies at brown university and an adjunct professor of law at georgetown university law center. he served under president obama as the first director of privacy and civil liberties for the white house national security staff, focusing on
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cybersecurity, open government, and data privacy initiatives. from 2006-2 thousand nine, he was the first deputy for civil liberties and the director of national intelligence, reviewing new surveillance authorities, the terrorist watch list, and other sensitive programs. prior to his service, he was a counsel for the american civil liberties union where he advocated for safeguards for a number of post-9/11 initiatives, including the usa patriot act. he was a law clerk on the united states court of appeals for the first circuit. he has a jd from harvard where he served on the "harvard law review" and he graduated from dartmouth college. thank you very much for coming. we will begin with you, mr. wittes. turn the mic on. thank you, chairman feinstein, vice chairman chambliss, and members of the committee for inviting me to present my views on fisa reform. when i was coming in here today,
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i had a brief conversation standing in the aisle with john delong, the head of compliance at nsa. we were talking to another gentleman who had just published or written a document related to these reform issues. the person informed us that there were four typos in the document, which he was annoyed about. jokingly, but i think ppicably --e -- a aptly responded, if that were us, we would have to notify the fisa court about each of them and the committee about each of them. so, you know, i think it is actually an amusing but very ip that ive clip -- qu
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wanted to come back to at the end of my remarks. ofhis press conference august 9, president obama said with respect to fisa that he believes we should have "rater oversight, greater transparency, and more constraints on the use of this authority." i was going to in these remarks describe some major opportunities i see towards these goals in the wake of the disclosed and undisclosed -- the authorized and unauthorized disclosures of the summer. frankly, your comments in your opening remarks, chairman feinstein, covered some of that ground, and frankly, my extended views on that subject are in my written statement. what i would like to do instead is make two broad points, high altitude points, about the stakes involved in this discussion. the first involves our oversight structures and their integrity and what we are talking about
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when we say the word "transparency" in this context. transparency obviously is a very important value in any democracy, but when you're talking about intelligence collection activities, it is not a simple value. in fact, normally with respect to intelligence programs, we consider transparency as an evil, because some things have to be secret. in the context of those things, transparency is not necessarily a virtue, and sunlight is not necessarily a disinfectant. watergate, of congress set up a series of reforms to the oversight and accountability system for intelligence, and notably transparency was not really part of them. rather,em was designed, to create accountability without transparency. at its deepest level, the controversy that has followed the edward snowden leaks
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reflects a loss of faith in the continued vitality of this set of reforms. so, i support your efforts very much to increase transparency in this area, but i think it is really important when we speak of transparency to decide as a threshold matter whether what we is a loss ofbout faith in that system or whether we are talking about transparency in the context of a system that presumes that its people will be keeping secrets. i want to lay my cards on the table about that and say, i still believe in the basic integrity of the post-watergate structures of which this committee is a part. in my view, nothing in the current disclosures should cause us to lose faith in the essential integrity of this system of delegated intelligence oversight, delegated both within the congressional context and within the judicial context.
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rather, the disclosures should give the cook -- give the public great confidence both in the oversight mechanisms at work and in the underlying activity of the intelligence community and its legality. say, i have, let me gone through the declassified material carefully. these disclosures, to my mind, show no evidence of intentional, unlawful spying on americans. they show a remarkably low rate of the sort of errors that any complex system of technical collection will inevitably produce. they show very robust compliance procedures, as mr. delong's earlier today reflects breed they show earnest and serious efforts to keep the congress informed, notwithstanding some members' protestations to the contrary. they show a remarkable
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communication with the fisc and keeping the court informed of activities and complying with the judgments. looks nothing like the rubberstamp that it is portrayed to be in countless caricatures. it looks rather like a series judicial institution of considerable energy. to the extent that members agree with this analysis, as i know many members of this committee do, the first task, it seems to me, is to defend the existing structures publicly and energetically, as both you and vice chairman chambliss have to correctot imagined structural deficiencies in the system. critically, it seems to me the defense of these mechanisms necessarily involves a defense of some degree of limitations on transparency, as well as the
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injection of transparency into that system. in other words, the challenge of transparency is a very subtle one. it is to inject transparency within the basic confines of an oversight system that is actually designed to protect secrets. the second brought high altitude --nt i want to make concerts concerns of the underlying activity itself. there is this word we throw around, "big data." there is no real word for the era before. era, there wasta one model that we used to think about the relationship between collection and use of data by the government. the model worked basically -- it had a very small aperture for collection, rate restrictions on collection, but once you have collected material, there were
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very few restrictions on what you could do with it. think about it. as a small aperture for collection and essentially no rules for regarding what you do with information -- the era of big data inevitably slips that on its head. -- flips that on its head. we are going to have a much wider aperture for collection as an initial matter. we are going to have neurotically detailed rules of use, exploitation, and handling. what constrains the use of that material once collected is law. -- that puts enormous substantive premium on the law that this congress writes. that theu believe intelligence agencies will not follow the law. so the question is, how scared
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of this model should we be where you have a wide aperture for collection, really restrictive rules of use, and the major thing that is restraining that use is substantive law? i would say that the answer to that question, to go back to john delong's joke, is, esther somehow confident you are in the compliance procedures before you ask yourself how afraid you are of that system. important to distinguish between the technical capacity to do something and whether that thing is actually going to happen. i sit here today, the d.c. police could be rating my house. they have the technical capacity to do it. i have enormous confidence that it is not happening. the fbi could be wiretapping my phone. they have the technical capacity to do it. i have a great deal of confidence that it is not happening. the reason is both that the
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substantive law tells me does not happening, and that the compliance procedures associated with the system give me confidence that if it were to happen, there would be a remedy, i would find out about it, and that will act as a restraint. that puts an enormous premium on the question of compliance procedures. one thing we have learned an enormous amount about is the compliance procedures the nsa uses. they are remarkable. they are detailed. they produce data. what i would say -- i will stop you want to ask, how confiden -- asked how confident we should be in this basic system in which we have changed the aperture of collection in exchange for a change in the set of rules regarding use, focus on compliance, and ask yourself how
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confident you are in the compliance regime. that seems to me the nub, not just of the 215 issue, but every issue where you are going to end up. matter,hnical and legal it is going to happen in a bunch of areas. we are going to collect more and restrict use on the back and more. i think the focus on compliance is really where the game is. thank you. >> thank you. mr. edgar? you want to turn on the mic. you have to speak directly into it. >> thank you, madam chairwoman. thank you for this opportunity to testify on reforms to fisa. in the spirit of transparency after swearing then -- ben wittes to secrecy, it was my document that had four typos. [laughter] my perspective on these issues is shaped by my experience as a
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privacy lawyer both inside and outside the government as you explained in the aftermath of 9/11. work with the aclu with a special focus on section 215. that was one of the provisions we were most concerned about. in 2006, i had a really unique opportunity to go inside the surveillance world, first at the office of director of national intelligence, and then at the white house. seeing how these programs work in practice. it is fair to say the intelligence community is facing a serious crisis in public confidence. the fact that a majority of americans regard edward snowden, despite his bizarre actions, as a whistleblower, thinking their fears of government snooping on a massive scale has been confirmed, should give us pause about what that means for trust americans have any intelligence apparatus and its checks and balances.
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no doubt these fisa collection programs are certainly very broad. orderssiness records relate to substantially >> on the issue of internet content, the collection of internet communication content touch is the end as a word, ofches, about 30 petabytes information. that is one with 15 zeros after it. that is about one percent of the internet. google touches 20 petabytes. much of this collection is enabled by pfizer after 9/11. by pfizer -- by
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fisa after 9/11. i believe public trust is equally vital. amended tod be enhance three fundamental values. the first value is transparency. i have to disagree with senator rockefeller who said the american people will never understand how this process works. i don't think they do now, but it is just now becoming more open. we may see greater understanding over time. the public and the government see fisa through to front prisons. inside see complex guidelines administered an army of lawyers subject to review by
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the court. the public sees none of this. for decades the only information released to the public surveillancesa was a number of applications taught and granted. the public thought thefisa court process was secret law and not to be trusted. to release decided this information. this has welcomed the transparency. of thefaith estimate number of u.s. persons whose communications or records were collected and the number whose information is actually examined. i believe the government should detail the major categories of data that are being obtained that include u.s. hersen
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information, both under fisa. >> stop here. explain what you mean by the basic categories. >> the american public now knows that its call detail records are as we haveer fisa. heard earlier, this rationale for bulk collection could be much broader. it depends on the circumstances. he gave a classic lawyers said if we could make the showing that we needed them in bulk and had the right protections and procedures in place, maybe we could. some kind of records, maybe we couldn't. thosemy contention that major categories should be public information. there is some risk to this because major companies that provide that data, you could
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surmise that they were participating. i don't think that particular companies should be identified. but this is the kind of thing that would avoid the controversy we had over call detail records. kind of datais the we are getting and these are the protections. value is democratic accountability to the rule of law. hat i mean by that is f theisa court should be made more like other courts to the greatest extent possible. other courts operate in the open and hear from both sides. let's go over those. recently, major court opinions interpreting law have been released. continued release should become, in my view, a matter of course. the excessive secrecy of thefisa process has distorted
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national debate on multiple occasions. courts broad interpretation is what permits the nsa called detailed records program. the idea that all information is relevant is surprising to legal experts. the fact that the court made this decision is not known. that seriously distorted debate during a multiple reauthorization of the patriot act. we did the best we could to make that information available to congress. that is not the kind of national debate we usually have. we have a debate in which the public participates, in which members get pressure from their constituents. you don't have to go into a room and read documents about secret programs. that distorted the debate. the second example, the nsa's
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interpretation of the requirement in section 702 four content surveillance targeting foreign persons, that those procedures must target foreign persons is also surprising. opinions courts recent include not only communications that are to or from that person but also those that are about that person in a particular narrow sense. the selector for that person appears in the communication. even communications which are not to or from or about the foreign target at all has been acquired as a result of the manner in which some nsa -- >> exactlyme what program are you talking about? >> in the recently released fisa in 2011, it was documented how information from multiple communications, what
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they call multi-communications notsactions, was obtained by mistake but because the way the system was designed. that included any selector that was a foreign target in the entire multi-communications transaction. so that created a lot of controversy in thefisa court and required the court to work with the government and the intelligence community to narrow the minimization guidelines. >> this is important. may i interrupt this to respond? notified thensa oj, the d and i and thefisa court and the house and senate intelligence committees of the syrians compliance incidents impacting a subset of an collection under section 702 of known as upstream collection. this comprises about 10% of all collection that takes place
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under 702 and occurs in an essay obtains internet communications such as e-mails from certain u.s. companies that operate the thernet background, i.e. companies that own and operate the telecommuting -- the telecommunication lines. the issue arose that the nsa while trying to acquire e-mails to, from, or about and foreign
that they were i acquiring e-mails from persons within the united states that happen to be bundled with the e- mail messages nsa was trying to collect. his bundling is done by internet companies in order to make it easier to send information quickly over the telecom lines that make up the internet. unfortunately, nsa's technical systems could not easily
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separate the individual messages within these bundles and the result was that nsa collected some e-mail messages it did not intend to acquire. we held a lengthy hearing on the court's ruling on october 20, 2011, at which general alexander and lisa monaco, then the assistant attorney general for national security, described the court's ruling and what they were doing to address it. here is my point. it was a mistake, action was taken immediately to correct it. us, we took action. >> i couldn't agree more. thatoint i was making is in essence, at bottom, this was hadt how thefisa court interpreted the requirement that congress had given them that its acquisitions target foreign persons and that it have minimization procedures that
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included certain elements. because of misunderstandings about how the system is working, this compliance problem resulted. yes, they record everything the way they're supposed to to the court, to the committee and so forth. my point is that having greater transparency about the fisa court and how they were interpreting those requirements would've aided the public understanding about how these things work. we know this now because the opinions have been declassified. is that we would have a more normal process for this court like other judicial bodies. >> you mean if the recording as a matter of course. yes. if it was just a routine process
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that this is a court opinion, we're going to go through it, we're going to declassify and read asked some of it, we would learn about things like how they interpreted targets, how they interpreted relevance, what minimization procedures are required. we are learning all of that now. going forward i would like to see us know that more at the time that it happens. example of this, which you well know. courts pre-he fisa 9/11 concerns and the resulting wall that was created that totributed to a failure prevent the 9/11 attacks. a secrecy about this legal issue meant there was no public pressure to correct this information sharing problem until the 9/11 attacks. that example which is obviously old ground shows the transparency about fisa is not about an informed debate about
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privacy, it is also that it remains effective in defending national security. what if this crazy requirement the court put in the crater wall puts up the pressure on it. right now what happens only happens inside the tent of what this -- of which this committee is a part. it is to provide a mechanism for the court to hear both sides by creating a special advocate or an amicus. some courts generally here only from the government side. the fisa court is not ordinary. post-9/11new authority, it oversees complex and vast intelligence collection programs. one need only read the most recently declassified opinions to wonder how they might have been different if the judges had heard from another side.
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perhaps even more useful than a would be aocate team ofmaster or a special masters trained in computer science to assist the court. many of the most serious problems were about lawyers regarding how surveillance itself works. a lawyer who is a special court judge,isa maybe we need a special master with more computer science experience. finally, i believe enhancing democratic accountability requires -- requires reform. the power goes exclusively to the chief justice of the united states who has unfortunately picked mainly judges who are like him, appointed by republican presidents and friendly to the national security establishment. while i believe judge selection
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should be kept within the judiciary, the process should be broadened to include additional federal appellate judges and associate justices of the supreme court heard finally, i'd like to turn to privacy. collection authorities and safeguards should over time in my view be modified to require new privacy protections. this will require the development of alternatives to bulk collection using innovative argosy enhancing techniques and cryptographic tools. i believe without any malicious intent, the scale of the programs already has resulted in significant compliance problems. is unlikely these programs could continue indefinitely without abuse. by having such sensitive data amassed in a large government bureaucracy that has found it difficult to keep data secret. might sellowden access to the nsa's surveillance
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access to our adversaries. general alexander said that if that would happen he would get caught immediately. i hope that is true, and how sure are we that some of this data could not be potentially compromised, leaks or abuse by somebody who is not acting at the behest of a president who's abusing civil liberties or an nsa director who is abusing civil liberties but a malicious insider. the answer may lie in phasing in requirements over time to use technologyenhancing to access data without amassing in bulk. we went from old data to big data. we might call the smart data. the nsa has sponsored research into cryptographic tools that could allow it to have access to the information it needs and only the information it needs while providing sound privacy assurances. tools like private information retrieval that could minimize
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the danger to national security revealing the government's interest in particular data, a danger that is one of the main reasons the nsa may prefer bulk collection over individualized queries. i believe as long as the government used these privacy enhancing tools as optional, deployment will like. congress could phase in mandates for some of these privacy enhancing technologies with some steps for the broader collection authorities which we hope these technologies would make obsolete. in conclusion, while it is true new collection authorities have made it into a to a sword, i believe in my view it would be a mistake. first it would enhance transparency, second would ensure greater accountability to the rule of law by making the court more like a regular court and finally protect privacy
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through innovative technology, congress can help ensure that fisa remains a shield that protects american civil liberties. both very much. mr. edgar, i might say that the administration has just sent us a proposal. both senator champ listen i have had a chance to review it. it is on the trusty blackberry. it is essentially some language for department of a special .ounsel this will be made available and we would appreciate it if you take a look at it. >> certainly. >> there something that people don't really understand. court historically has been guarded in what they do. it is a classified court appointed by the chief justice. they are all federal sitting judges, they take it very seriously and it has been very
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difficult for us to even get opinions. that is not changing. the first opinion that changed the 90 reauthorization, day reauthorization and the secondary opinion that such strictures on that reauthorization. now i believe, and we will in our bill actually compel that these opinions come to us every a days so that we will have chance to review them and make them available to others as well. i think senator king has been particularly interested in this concept of a public advocate. so we have looked at public advocate, we looked at the term cole spokeh mr. about a little bit and now we have this recommendation for a special counsel from the administration. we will be looking at that for our bill, i want you to know that.
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committeen on this since one year before 9/11. i try to do my homework, i try to attend the meetings. that the nsa is extraordinarily careful in what they do i really believe in the things that they reported from 209, the mistakes that were made. the reported to us in told us what they were, they were really hers no misuse of the system. andpeople were disciplined i think they learned from that. faith in the nsa. i also have a deep and abiding are going to be exposed to additional attacks
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and because of where the attacks come from, the language differences, the cultural differences, the inability to use human intelligence fully, that the technological aspects of intelligence are extraordinarily important to prevent an attack. that is what this use was, to prevent an attack. it is not used to surveillance for other purposes. it is to prevent and protect against an attack and protect the homeland. us, i think,rd for who do these meetings twice a -- without end. us very leave vulnerable. >> i agree. i think these new authorities are vital to national security.
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they do plug gaps from before 9/11. they have prevented terrorist attacks. what we are dealing with here is the need to ensure the public continues to have confidence in the checks and balances that protect civil liberties. frankly, i was as surprised as everybody why the number of americans that a leaf that edward snowden was a whistleblower. perhaps that had to do with the fact that i had been on the inside for many years, had seen the care with which the nsa takes it's all nations. so it is important to step back and remind ourselves that those of us who are inside, just because we know about all of these things doesn't mean everybody else does. for example that government officials say i am very upset about the misleading and inaccurate descriptions of her grounds that are classified and then leaked, it is almost in the nature of a leak. if it were accurate, that would
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be because you knew about it. i am not speaking for the good faith of the media, what i mean to say is simply that it is difficult to have a debate about something like intelligence, so we have to create mechanisms that permit those checks and balances to work in ways that are difficult because we don't have the same degree of transparency that we have in other systems. i tried to outline three different ways in which we might be able to strengthen that. >> i was looking at your written paper. are you reading something slightly different from what you submitted to us? we would like to have what you said. >> i have just summarize my written statement. >> could you write it up and send it to us? thank you very much. mr. chairman? articles that you
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have both written. you do your homework and study this thing. civilianstandpoint of experts in the field of journalism, you to rank up there pretty high. i know you are familiar with the terrorist world and how terrorists operate and how they work. i would like for both of you to on where you think we are on this issue. the terrorist world is watched her closely the snowden releases. they will continue to watch. react, haveng to already reacted, to those releases. what, in the opinion of each of you is going to be the long-term reaction of the terrorist community to releases such as sources andasically
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what kind of damage is that going to do? let me start with you. least qualified to give that information. i don't have access to the information of what you just said. everything i'm about to say is a ,eaction to things i have heard i have read, or i assume based on the structure of the situation. i have no reason to doubt the repeated statements of senior officials of the executive branch, the consequences of this disclosure will have been in operational terms terrible. i similarly have no reason to terrorist if i were a , some of whom are extremely
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intelligent enterprising people, some of them are not. i am much more afraid of the ones who are. behavior tot my information in an ongoing way that i learned about u.s. capabilities. height don't know the answer to the question how bad is it going to be in the long run, but i also have no reservation about we haveosition that given away a lot of information about our capabilities, some of it in the form of leaks and frankly some of it in the form of authorized disclosures in response to those leaks which i support. i think the effort to respond to those leaks requires a certain degree of proactive release of and proactive declassification, but that has i think we'reo.
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going to suffer operational consequences but i'm not the person to ask what they will the because you have a lot more information about that than i do. >> i guess i just say i agree that the dni is going to have an of alltative statement these revelations. a couple thoughts. one is, obviously the terrorists ,now that their communications having knowledge about basic categories of information that are potentially under surveillance and the safeguards which apply should not be things that are classified. they should not be things that may or may not help our adversaries to have that general information but is essential to operating a democracy. but having particular companies names would be a problem -- >>
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let me interrupt you for a second. what exactly do you mean by those operational instances? >> essentially, the biggest secret is what kinds of efforts that people make to ease aid surveillance are or are not potentially effective? people are foreign targets vary widely in sophistication. on the flip side, they may think certain things are under surveillance which there is no capability to surveillance. those things may be very damaging if leach. it is a delicate balance to ensure that the sufficient amount of information is given to the public to have informed
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debates and yet not reveal those kinds of details. i don't envy the dni or any of those officials in trying to make quick judgments as to what can be released in the wake of these kinds of controversies. i would like to come as a result, make it a more proactive process. it will be more open, it will be more transparent and we may lose certain things as a result of that, but it is far better to have that land in advance, to -- maybe with some cost to national security, but taking away the initiative from future snowden's or other lakers who may think that they are being -- or other leakers who may think that they are whistleblowers. >> senator, welcome.
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oh, sorry, i missed you. you're so quiet. >> please, senator king, go ahead. any really don't have questions. i wanted to thank you gentlemen. i think you have really added to the discussion. extra heads.o have all of us are always smarter than any of us. so thank you for your testimony. >> thanks for having us. >> thank you, madam chairman. i, too, want to thank you for your testimony. to propose to both of you the idea of having some sort of advocate for privacy concerns or someone other than the government arguing a different fifth.fore the
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i am wondering if it would work to have the general counsel of the privacy and civil liberties board take on that role. thateason that i suggest this is a possibility, and i tolized that board was slow get up and running and that the administration was slow to appoint members to it, but if as joeard operates lieberman and i intended to when we wrote the 2004 law, it will be very knowledgeable about our counterterrorism efforts and the privacy implications of those efforts. it seems to me that when there is a significant issue, that the general counsel of that board could be tasked with performing the roles of the amicus or the
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advocate or whatever you want to call me. the individual. the reason this approach seems worth exploring further and i want to explore it with those of appointf we just someone from the outside, if the court appoint someone, it is unlikely that they are going to have the background and the information unless they have the kind of experience that both of you have. but that universe is going to be pretty slam as far as having up- to-date information on our counterterrorism activities. idea that has just occurred to me as i have been listening to the testimony today. so you can feel free to shoot it down if you wish or to resent an alternative approach. >> i wouldn't want to shoot it down. mr. edgar made a comment
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earlier today that i think really bears on this, which is that a lot of the trouble that happened both in 2009 and in 2011 was assumption of failed , lawyerechnical people or engineer communications. the chain of information from engineering to nsa lawyers to justice department lawyers to is a game of telephone that really requires lawyers with incredibly detailed technical understanding in order to get information that is accurate into legal form before the fisk. that has been a challenge over time and so there is something -- i really agree with you that , there's amething
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head scratching puzzle. what happens if you appoint an outside advocate who has perhaps a very high security clearance that very little background in the technical side of this and say, go argue against the government's case. that is a very difficult challenge and the ramp-up speed will raisewith that a question about how effective that advocate is going to be, particularly in the context of a time sensitive application that is going to proceed on an exit gent basis. exit gent basis -- on basis. nt i do worry that arguing before the government on a fisk is another government office.
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the -- one of the two edit values that we are trying for, one of them is a more adversarial reason tatian before the fisk itself. the second is a public confidence that the fisk had the benefit of a genuine adversarial presentation. thatworry a little bit this would not be perceived as fully independent advocate who has no regulatory relationship with respect to the intelligence community. i think you may have a little bit of a legitimacy loss if you structured that way. may bereason i think you able to overcome that is the independence of that board is similar to the independence of an inspector general. i think the public is very comfortable with the concept of an inspector general tends to trust ig reports and give them
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credibility, but i understand your point that it is still government. that the well be benefits that you get an expertise for doing it that way may be a marginal compromise in perceived independence. it is just a caution i have flagged for you. >> thank you. mr. edgar? ben's pointcho about perceived independence of the special advocate being as important as the actual independence. there is an extraordinarily difficult balance. you need expertise and continued understanding of how it works. you also need some independence. my concern is really a practical one. who would that general counsel be? are they a detail he from the od and i? other someone who has a long security law career ahead of them? that might be difficult even with that best structural
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independence. actually the members of the oversight board might be better because they are outsiders who long.e this role over a of time and an ability to gain expertise. i go back to my point about the special master. i think that is even more crucial as i think about the compliance incidents. we as lawyers want to think about guilt. those two incidents in 2009 in 2011 were very serious ones that did not involve any real guilt on anybody's part. but they were still systemically a big deal, a beagle for the court, a big deal for the nsa and now that we public you know about it for the public. having a special master, which as time-honored an institution as an amicus for the , i think there are lots of ways to strengthen the institution.
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magistrates to consider lower decisions. the court could be made using the type of institutions that courts have always had into a court that is able to handle as anw role as a sword, overseer of vast intelligence programs, not to saying yes or no to national security wiretaps. this goes back to the original order.a now we are talking about much bigger tasks for the court to accomplish. >> thank you, very much. >> i'm not going to get into them debate at this time, but thank you very much for attending. i want to thank you for your testimony and we are going to proceed and hopefully anything but sausage comes out of it. so thank you very much.
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>> in a few moments, house republicans and senate democrats speak with reporters about the continued debate over federal spending. the funding the healthcare law and a possible government shutdown. in about 40 minutes, president obama talks about healthcare at a community college in suburban washington. >> on the next "washington journal," we will discuss the continual congressional debate on federal spending, and defining the healthcare law at a possible government shutdown. you can call in with your questions to senator tom coburn of oklahoma.
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"washington journal" is live on c-span everyday day at 7 a.m. eastern. we bring public affairs events from washington directly to you, putting you in the room at congressional hearings, white house events, briefings and conferences. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013] we are funded by your local cable and satellite provider. now you can watch us in hd. the houses of congress are prepared to move ahead on a bill that will potentially defund the government after september 30. the bill is expected to pass and be sent back to the house without a provision defunding the healthcare law. the house could take up the bill as early as noon on saturday.
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members of the house leadership spoke with reporters on thursday morning. [inaudible] >> good morning everyone. the american people don't want the president's healthcare bill and they don't want the government to shut down. republicans are listening. we passed a bill last week that would do just what the american people have asked. it is time for the senate to listen and pass the bill that we have sent their. on the debt limits, we are going to introduce a plan that ties important spending cuts and progrowth reforms to debt limit increase. the president says i'm not going to negotiate. l, i am sorry but it doesn't
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work that way. we are not going to ignore washington spendings problem and you're not going to accept this new normal of a weak economy with no new jobs and shaking wages. we need to strengthen our economy for all americans and we need to deal with washington spending problems. >> good morning. week weker said last sent the senate a continuing resolution that funds the government and stops obamacare orore it costs one more job costly families of his job one more dollar of discretionary income. we also talked a lot today about a plan we are going to put forward this week. it is a plan to address the debt ceiling. we have a debt crisis in this nation. have't think many people differed with that notion. we do have a plan to reduce
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wasteful government spending which also spurs economic growth. our plan reduces energy costs for families and businesses, it calls for the reform of our tax it performs washington spending and it delays obamacare for one year for all american families. president obama has already delayed the law for big business , for insurance companies and the politically connected. fair for us to say that american families should the have the benefit of delay that this president has given to those. long, president obama and his democratic colleagues in the senate have chosen to ignore our looming debt crisis. president obama's plan has been and is still more debt and no reform. the american people have resoundingly rejected this idea.
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we have a recent poll out this morning, the bloomberg poll, which says that the american people know they don't want a government shutdown, but they are tired of the debt and they want to make sure that that this president sits down and negotiates with us a resolution to this problem. we call on the president now to sit down with us, harry reid to sit down with us and let's solve the problem. this plan of more debt and no reform is absolutely unacceptable. it is unacceptable to us and it is unacceptable to the american people that we represent. >> it is interesting, you read the stories of different things that different people do. americans realize that we are in a big crisis. i read a headline that the speaker gets a phone call from the president. first a positive thing is
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going to happen. we are going to see movement. the president and to say let's work together, he just called to say i will not negotiate. that is not the same message he gives to other world leaders. this is a time that, one, we are americans first. the leader talked about the new poll that came out from bloomberg. americans concerned about economic growth in the size of our debt. when you look at the bill that we will roll out, when it comes to the debt ceiling, we take control of making sure that we don't continue just run away spending, but more importantly we bring growth back, economic growth that when you look at the joint economic committee comes out, just one percent of growth will cut down more than 300 million dollars of debt in 10 years. these are all bills that have passed the house before. i haven't they become law? why are we still lingering in the same problem we have? because the senate will not act. today that can all change. we asked the president to call again. but this time don't call to say
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you won't talk. to exactly what the american people ask, sit down and work together so we can get this country moving one more time. republicans are leading, we are leaving on the issues important to this country. we are leading on those policies that will create jobs, get people back to work, get a strong economy. we are leading in an effort to get the government to live within its means, cut spending, get those spending reforms so that our fiscal situation is strong. we are leading on health care, on ensuring that americans have access to quality and we are leading unprotect and hard- working americans across this country that are feeling the overage from the federal government. what do we hear on the other side? usder pelosi has called legislative arsonists. mr. van hollen said the house republicans are scaremongering on obamacare.
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president obama accused us of holding the u.s. hostage. these accusations couldn't be further from the truth and i encourage president obama and the democrats to listen to the 57% of americans across this who would oppose most or all of obamacare because it is making their lives harder. i encourage them to sit down with the average family of four in america that is going to see their demands increase $7,500 on average. i encourage them to talk to some of the people i represent in washington state, moms and dads who are wondering how they will ensure their kids -- how they . .l ensure their kids or those people that are losing their full-time job because affordmployer cannot obamacare. this debate trumps politics in every way. it is about people, it is about everyday hard-working people and
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we encourage the democrats to listen to the american people and then do what is right. mom and mom's have to be really good at multitasking and making sure everyone is happy, everyone is heard and gets along and to solve life problems. that is the only way you can do it to avoid mass chaos in a home. it is not easy in this job that i am doing today is not easy either. i did not come here to shut things down, i came here to get things done. i don't want the president's health care law for my family, my mom, my kids, and neither does the majority of americans and certainly not the majority of kansans. in mying to do everything
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power to repeal and replace the president's health care law. however i also do not want the government to shut down. there are the eagle across the country who depend on essential services like social security, medicare and the security provided by our nations military both here and abroad heard we are committed to keeping the federal government opened to provide these very services. the house has listened to the american people who want the delay and the president's health care law and ensure the federal government remains open. we are leading the charge to rein in spending and protect hard-working americans. it is time for the senate to join us to make this work. let's face it, the affordable care act obamacare is not ready for prime time. yet another broken promise. by $2500?ould go down not the case. many families as they're beginning to look at these
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exchanges that perhaps open up as early as next week a finding that there unions are going to asup by perhaps as much 400%. yet another broken promise showing again that this is not ready for prime time. >> go on, but you need a haircut. >> [inaudible] >> if a dog ate my homework -- yes ma'am? >> the last time there was a fight over the debt ceiling, the stock market dropped by 2000 points and u.s. credit was downgraded. are you willing to risk that again? are you truly willing to hold up the raising of the debt ceiling if you don't get some or all of the items on your list? >> listen, the problem is not what is happening or not happening here, the fact is it is $17 trillion worth of debt.
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this year the government will bring in more revenue than the history of the company -- in the history of the country. we have a spending problem that has to be addressed. in addition to that, we see almost no economic growth. if you really want to solve this problem, you have to control spending and have real economic growth that allows americans a better shot at a better job and better wages and more hours. happens -- >> mr. speaker, use it every time spending is the issue. on this bill all you are offering our freebies like medical malpractice and some leftover low hanging fruits. why aren't you doing more on spending? >> in this will we have spending cuts and we have issues that will help spur more economic growth. we think the balance is correct. speaker boehner, in light of bringing this bill to floor, a clean billsend
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to the senate to avoid shutdown? >> i do not see that happening. it will you ensure that there will not a government shutdown? >> i made it clear for months and months, we have no interest in seeing the government shutdown. but we have got to address the spending problems that we have in this town. the we have options available to us. they are not going to be any speculation on what we do are not due until the senate passes their bill. we are not going to have a discussion about the cr or speculate about the cr until the senate finishes their bill. >> so you're not going to have a discussion about it, but you don't intend to shut the government down? >> that is correct. i do not expect that to happen.
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[inaudible] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2013] is expected that the provision defining the health care law would be taken out before the bill is sent back to the house. democratic senate leaders spoke with reporters earlier in the day. >> as a set on the floor this morning, we can collapse that time to finish the day. having said that, if anyone here house republicans in the
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have a workable plan for shut down on monday, tell me about it . i get all kinds of reports for them they're going to do this and that, so we will have to see what they decide to do because right now they do not know. see, they areg i in this ditch and they want to get out of it, but they keep digging deeper and deeper and deeper. ditch we can hardly see the top of it. they do not know what they're going to do. the tea party keeps putting them in this whole and they keep digging deeper and deeper. we want to finish this legislation as quickly as possible. every hour that takes by puts our country closer to a shutdown. there is still time for cooler heads to prevail, but not a lot of time. i was so encouraged yesterday to , evenople come down
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republicans, and talk about a need to finish this legislation. there were a lot of good presentations. theyve heard about what are going to do a suicide, dumbest idea they ever heard, but john mccain did the best yesterday. .bamacare is the law it is the law and has been for four years. declared constitutional. they have to move onto something else. square --e fair and fair and square. move onto something else. i hope there are some republicans in the house that start talking like reasonable republicans here. this is not a game for the middle class. this is not an effort to satisfy the koch brothers.
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one visitor from nevada came to me and said i work for the united states park service and we are so afraid. shutow that parks will down. that means i will not have a job. it is due the federal government, so that is what is happening in the stock market. the longest succession of down days since 2012, well more than that only toe summon her work in the park service not know it's going to happen, financial markets don't know what is going to happen. this is really a sad sad commentary on what is happening in the house. again, i hope to pass this bill as quickly as possible. i hope the republicans will stick with us.
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>> we democrats want to be sure that the government stays open and does the job that it is supposed to do. we want to keep the government as hard fororking the american people as the people who work hard to it enable us to pay the bills. we are just days away from a government shutdown. the clock is ticking. you can see for yourself heard we have put forth a plan that does two things, keep the government funding until november 15 to enable us to work out a longer range solution at number two we have got rid of the two riders that would be so
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provocative that they would be vetoed by the president of the united states. attachmentclear, any that either d funds or d lays the affordable care act will be vetoed by the president. forcan huff, you can puff 21 hours, but you cannot blow the affordable care act away. we have in our amendment, we eliminate the rider to defund obamacare. we also eliminate the rider to reconstruct the way america will pay our bills because we don't believe you should pay china first, we believe you should a social security and veterans benefits first and then we keep government open so that we can arrive at a process where we can
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move all of the funding for next year forward and away that meets the missions, shows that we can be a more frugal government and this a shutdown and draconian effect of sequester. make no mistake, shut down is not theater. shutdown has real consequences. if we go to a shutdown, lots of things will happen. first of all for social security. you will get your benefits, but social security offices will either be closed or open only part-time, so you're earned benefits, you won't even be able to apply for them. even though we protect the veterans, the fact is that it will further make the disability even morecess backlogged. we don't want to do that.
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thousands of students will be unable to pay their tuition because their loans will be delayed. every single day there will be another aspect of what the consequence of the shutdown is. it is not only shutdown that is bad, we have to get to how we are going to fund our government for fiscal year 2014. we want to be sure that we do it anyway that meets mission, meets purpose and do it anyway that is fiscally responsible. we have something called sequester. sequester does swashbuckling regardlessboard cuts of whether the program is good or dated. we oppose that. we want to cancel sequester for at least two years. let me just give you one example. i have the proud on or to represent the national institute
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-- people who should win the nobel prize the cause they are out there finding cures for the diseases that affect the american people. year when they announced that cancer rates were reduced by 15% because of the work that had been done, instead of getting medals, they were told they were going to get pink sequester means 5% cuts. whether the on the cusp of a breakthrough or not. whether you are dealing with an areemic, or whether you dealing with epidemic of alzheimer's and autism. we should be funding this. but no. by $2l cut the nih billion and make sure